Easily create model articulations with STK plugin

Model articulations can add a wonderful visual aspect to your STK scenarios and movies. Unfortunately, up to this point all articulations had to be handwritten in a text file and then loaded into STK. This can be a very tedious and frustrating process, as it can take an extreme amount of time to get the articulations correct.

In an effort to shorten this process and add additional functionally to articulations, I have created the Articulation Creator plugin. This plugin provides a GUI interface for creating and editing articulations for all model types.

Additionally, it provides options to tie articulations to Analysis Workbench time instances and intervals lists. The plugin has shown large reductions in the amount of time required to make articulations, especially when creating complex animations.

One of the main downfalls of articulations is their inability to be considered for analytical purposes. This means that a rotation articulation is not considered for analytical attitude and does not rotate any of the child objects.

In an effort to bridge this gap, I added a feature that will create an attitude file that is the same as the original articulation. This allows for quick modeling of attitude changes that are considered in the analysis.

While this feature is currently only available for satellites and aircraft, it is a great start for quickly adding complex attitude changes in your scenarios. The plugin, along with the installation instructions, can be found be found in this article.

Happy creating!


Selby Stout

Selby is a field application engineer that works primarily with the U.S. Space Force.

Systems Tool Kit (STK)

Modeling and simulation software for digital mission engineering and systems analysis.