Satellite formation ying has become a critical issue in the aerospace engineering be-cause it is consideredas an enablingtechnologyfor manyspace missions. Thus, manynonlinear control theories have been developed for the tracking problem of satelliteformation ying, which include full-nonlinear dynamics, external disturbances andparameter uncertainty. In this study, nonlinear adaptive control law is developed us-ing an adaptive backsteppingtechnique to solve the relative position tracking problemof the satellite formation ying in the presence of mass uncertainty and the boundedexternal disturbance. Simulation studies are included to demonstrate the proposedcontroller performance. The proposed controller is shown to guarantee the systemstability againsttheexternalboundeddisturbancesin thepresenceofmassuncertainty.