Natural and sail-displaced doubly-symmetric Lagrange point orbits for polar coverage

Matteo Ceriotti, Colin McInnes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

17 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This paper proposes the use of doubly-symmetric, eight-shaped orbits in the circular restricted three-body problem for continuous coverage of the high-latitude regions of the Earth. These orbits, for a range of amplitudes, spend a large fraction of their period above either pole of the Earth. It is shown that they complement Sun-synchronous polar and highly eccentric Molniya orbits, and present a possible alternative to low thrust pole-sitter orbits. Both natural and solar-sail displaced orbits are considered. Continuation methods are described and used to generate families of these orbits. Starting from ballistic orbits, other families are created either by increasing the sail lightness number, varying the period or changing the sail attitude. Some representative orbits are then chosen to demonstrate the visibility of high-latitude regions throughout the year. A stability analysis is also performed, revealing that the orbits are unstable: it is found that for particular orbits, a solar sail can reduce their instability. A preliminary design of a linear quadratic regulator is presented as a solution to stabilize the system by using the solar sail only. Finally, invariant manifolds are exploited to identify orbits that present the opportunity of a ballistic transfer directly from low Earth orbit.
LanguageEnglish
Pages151-180
JournalCelestial Mechanics and Dynamical Astronomy
Volume114
Issue number1-2
Early online date22 Jun 2012
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2012

Fingerprint

ice ridge
Lagrange
Orbits
Coverage
Orbit
orbits
stability analysis
visibility
Earth (planet)
Ballistics
polar regions
ballistics
thrust
Pole
poles
Poles
linear quadratic regulator
low thrust
Restricted Three-body Problem
three body problem

Keywords

  • three body problem
  • eight-shaped orbits
  • solar sailing
  • polar observation
  • periodic orbits
  • visibility analysis
  • stability

Cite this

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Natural and sail-displaced doubly-symmetric Lagrange point orbits for polar coverage. / Ceriotti, Matteo; McInnes, Colin.

In: Celestial Mechanics and Dynamical Astronomy, Vol. 114, No. 1-2, 10.2012, p. 151-180.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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