Title: Calculating and analysis of re-entry condition for space tethered-assisted return system in elliptic orbit

Authors: Changqing Wang; Hanlin Wei; Aijun Li

Addresses: International Research Center of Space Tether System, Northwestern Polytechnical University, Xi'an 710072, China ' International Research Center of Space Tether System, Northwestern Polytechnical University, Xi'an 710072, China ' International Research Center of Space Tether System, Northwestern Polytechnical University, Xi'an 710072, China

Abstract: The calculation of re-entry condition and the analysis of influencing factors based on space tethered-assisted deorbit system are provided. Firstly, the process of space tethered-assisted return is described, then the dynamical model of this system and the backswing model of capsule in elliptic orbit coordinate system are established, according to Pontryagin's maximum principle the optimal control law is presented, and the calculation of re-entry condition is given. The influence on re-entry conditions from tether mass, eccentricity, true anomaly and the altitude of the orbit are analysed. Based on the above calculation and analysis, the correlation parameters that meet the re-entry condition under the elliptic orbit are obtained. Through the study of this article, we give a reference for choosing the parameters of future tethered-assisted return system and a theoretical reference for the calculation of re-entry condition in future space tether-assisted return technology.

Keywords: space tether systems; tethered assisted re-entry; re-entry conditions; eccentricity; true anomaly; elliptical orbit; space vehicle re-entry; spacecraft re-entry; dynamic modelling; capsule backswing model; optimal control; tether mass.

DOI: 10.1504/IJSPACESE.2014.064196

International Journal of Space Science and Engineering, 2014 Vol.2 No.3, pp.248 - 258

Received: 14 Jan 2014
Accepted: 05 Mar 2014

Published online: 04 Aug 2014 *

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