Projects per year
Abstract
This paper investigates the effect of planetary oblateness and solar radiation pressure on the orbits of high areatomass spacecraft. A planar Hamiltonian model shows the existence of equilibrium orbits with the orbit apogee pointing towards or away from the Sun. These solutions are numerically continued to nonzero inclinations and considering the obliquity of the ecliptic plane relative to the equator. Quasifrozen orbits are identified in eccentricity, inclination and the angle between the Sunline and the orbit perigee. The longterm evolution of these orbits is then verified through numerical integration. A set of ‘heliotropic’ orbits with apogee pointing in the direction of the Sun is proposed for enhancing imaging and telecommunication on the day side of the Earth. The effects of J2 and solar radiation pressure are exploited to obtain a passive rotation of the apsides line following the Sun; moreover the effect of solar radiation pressure enables such orbits at higher eccentricities with respect to the J2 only case.
Original language  English 

Pages (fromto)  137150 
Journal  Acta Astronautica 
Volume  81 
Issue number  1 
DOIs  
Publication status  Published  Dec 2012 
Event  62nd International Astronautical Congress 2011  Cape Town, South Africa Duration: 3 Oct 2011 → 7 Oct 2011 
Keywords
 frozen orbits
 heliotropic orbits
 solar radiation pressure
 Earth's oblateness
 Hamiltonian systems
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Projects
 1 Finished

VISIONSPACE  VISIONARY SPACE SYSTEMS: ORBITAL DYNAMICS AT EXTREMES OF SPACECRAFT LENGTH SCALE (ERC ADVANCED GRANT)
McInnes, C.
European Commission  FP7  European Research Council
1/02/09 → 30/09/14
Project: Research