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Gyro Stabilized Gimbals

We design, simulate and build a variety of gyro stabilized gimbal systems for:
  • Image stabilization
  • Comm on-the-move
  • Gimbal design and dynamics
  • Complete controller design
Other gimbal applications include:
  • Motion table/simulator design
  • Precision pointing
Below are some examples case studies.

Low cost stabilized gimbal retrofit

Low cost stabilized gimbal retrofit

A major surveillance video solutions supplier with a low-cost indirect drive pan-tilt product line asked IJK Controls to analyze the feasibility of retrofitting stabilization for improved on-the-move performance. The pan-tilt was to be converted to a two-axis stabilized gimbal.

IJK Controls reviewed the mechanical, electrical and software details of the design and presented the customer a trade matrix comparing the disturbance rejection performance and design impacts of various options and configurations of the proposed two-axis stabilized gimbal.

Three axis stabilized gimbal controller design

Three axis stabilized gimbal controller design

IJK Controls was asked to develop the controls strategy and detailed servo design for a three-axis gimbal capable of inertial stabilization and stabilized tracking of moving targets. The gimbal was to be mounted on a small ship with potentially large amounts of base motion.

Structural resonance in stabilized gimbal control

Structural resonance in stabilized gimbal control

Structural torsional resonances often limit the closed-loop bandwidth for large and mid-sized stabilized gimbals, but many more subtle structural effects can cause instability or impact performance.

IJK Controls engineers analyzed these more subtle structural effects to correct a poorly performing gyro stabilized gimbal. This high performance stabilized gimbal was resonating dangerously in only certain gimbal configurations. The servo control system was coupling with poorly understood structural modes.

Satellite in-the-loop test of stabilized antennas

Satellite in-the-loop test of stabilized antennas

Stabilized gimbal performance is often tricky to measure. Characterizing pointing accuracy of the transmit and receive beams for RF systems on a mobile platform is notoriously difficult. In an effort to understand different vendors’ stabilized gimbal performance, a customer asked IJK Controls to design a test to measure the pointing performance of mobile satcom systems. The test was to be a full “satellite in-the-loop” test with the antenna systems mounted on an actual vehicle in actual operating conditions.

Low profile antenna stabilization design

Low profile antenna stabilization design

Innovative RF designs allow for beam steering over a large field of regard in a package that is low profile compared to a classic two-axis stabilized gimbal.

The Low Profile Antenna program demonstrated the feasibility of using a variable-inclination continuous transverse stub (VICTS) aperture for a mobile satellite-TV antenna.

Missile seeker gimbal feedforward testbed

Missile seeker gimbal feedforward testbed

The Feedforward Testbed program was a demonstration project to develop a mirror-stabilized beam-steering mechanism for use in small missiles. Missile seekers are generally a gyroscope stabilized gimbal mounted to the front of a missile that attempts to track the target.