Aerospace Village - Satellite Orbits 101

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Video in TIB AV-Portal: Aerospace Village - Satellite Orbits 101

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Aerospace Village - Satellite Orbits 101
An introduction to the fundamentals
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Satellite Orbits 101 will provide an introductory understanding of the orbit of satellites/space vehicles. Leveraging knowledge, experience and visualization tools designed to describe and present orbital behaviors; the presentation will cover introductions to an array of orbital topics including what it even takes to reach and maintain orbit; which launch sites and windows are as important as they are; altitude classifications, such as HEO and LEO; directional classifications; inclination classifications, eccentricity classifications and more. The overlaps and interactions of these topics will also be discussed, as for example a satellite launched from near the equator and destined for a low-inclination orbit could receive help in reaching orbit from the rotation of the earth itself, but how this is not true for satellites bound for high inclination orbits. An attendee will walk away layman’s introductory demystification of just how many layers are beneath the phrase Satellite Orbit. With a degree in Electrical and Computer Engineering at the undergraduate level and Computer Information Systems Engineering with concentrations in Networks and Cyber Security at the Graduate level; Matthew Murray has spent the last twelve of a twenty year career supporting aerospace, cyber and software engineering contracts with Lockheed Martin. His industry knowledge and expertise includes infrastructure hardware, software/hardware interfaces, software development, networking and cyber security. Throughout his career he has gained an in-depth understanding of an array of disciplines and technologies that include satellite orbits and the software development techniques tied to them.
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Trajectory Presentation of a group 1 (number) Chaos (cosmogony) Distance Rotation Mathematics Causality Term (mathematics) Visualization (computer graphics) Spacetime Nichtlineares Gleichungssystem Pole (complex analysis) Rotation Presentation of a group Direction (geometry) Physicalism Inclined plane Shape (magazine) Distance Arithmetic mean Uniform resource locator Word Physics Condition number Eccentricity (mathematics)
Presentation of a group Drag (physics) Multiplication sign Kontraktion <Mathematik> Shape (magazine) Mereology Mathematics Object (grammar) Oval Gravitation Drum memory Curve Smoothing Characteristic polynomial Surface Interior (topology) Sound effect Generic programming Special unitary group Bit Flow separation Shape (magazine) Ellipse Type theory Curvature Network topology Order (biology) Whiteboard Object (grammar)
Divisor Direction (geometry) Motion capture Control flow Ellipse Food energy Rotation Parabola Frequency Parabolische Differentialgleichung Hyperbolischer Raum Telecommunication Natural number Term (mathematics) Gravitation Pattern language Eccentricity (mathematics) Social class Rotation Curve State observer Motion capture Category of being Type theory Hyperbolischer Raum Velocity Gravitation Pattern language Escape character Eccentricity (mathematics)
Workstation <Musikinstrument> Topology Presentation of a group Ellipse Inclined plane Chemical polarity Plane (geometry) Type theory Frequency Angle Gravitation Spacetime Nichtlineares Gleichungssystem Position operator
Observational study Process (computing) Software Visualization (computer graphics) Surface Distance Thresholding (image processing) Software development kit
Pairwise comparison
Rotation Pairwise comparison Logical constant Link (knot theory) Frequency Telecommunication State observer Thresholding (image processing) Rotation
Rotation Type theory Velocity Object (grammar) Anisotropy Spacetime Thresholding (image processing) Rotation
View (database) Distance
Velocity Surface 1 (number) Thermal expansion
hello welcome to satellite orbits 101 i'm matthew murray your presenter and today i'll be walking you through some of the fundamental terminology surrounding satellite orbits
now as the title implies this presentation isn't intended to turn you into a rocket scientist it's meant to peel away some of the mysticism surrounding the terms involved in the journey of satellites or space vehicles and give a better understanding of the meaning behind them to that end i've intentionally stayed away from any intense math or physics and just focused on scratching at the upper layer of this topic
before we jump into what the word orbit really involves it's worth mentioning a few things and covering a few terms to help inform you and calibrate your understanding the first matter worth discussing is launch locations they aren't random ever notice how the ones in the us always seem to happen in florida clear sunny days really do matter a strong enough wind can adversely affect the trajectory of a launched craft and lightning doesn't happen just down here on earth it happens in the sky too and a lightning strike as the craft moves through the atmosphere could cause huge problems launch locations aren't just about weather either depending on where you intend to place a satellite in terms of orbital distance and location oftentimes the rotation of the earth which is fastest at the equator is used to give a vehicle an extra push in launch
once you achieve orbit you have to keep it fuel on board the vehicle is used periodically to maintain or augment the orbit the surface of the earth isn't flat and smooth so the changes in the surface or the topology of the earth all those mountains and valleys can affect how the earth pulls on the satellite over time the other bodies in our solar system like the sun and the moon can also have a gravitational effect depending on where the vehicle is in relation to the atmosphere even a very thin layer of air and particles up there can produce enough drag and resistance to affect an orbit this can even increase when the sun comes around just like heat makes air expand down here the warming of the atmosphere can make drag even worse up there and let's not forget all the junk that satellites and the people who fly those satellites have to dodge in order to make a journey around the earth there's more than 128 million separate pieces parts and objects roaming around our planet right now
all right so let's start to dig a little bit deeper all orbit means in its most generic terms is one body or object moving around another so when that body the object is moving around is the earth the orbit is called geocentric there are several types of geocentric orbits and each of those types plays a part in what the satellite is up there to do the shape of the orbits can come in different eccentricities and all that refers to is the type of curve the orbit has is it circular or is it more of an oval or an ellipse
once we begin to consider the type of curve an orbit might have then we can begin to lump them into categories periodic orbits repeat in some consistent fashion and they're either elliptical or circular in nature because there's not a break in the pattern these are sometimes referred to as closed orbits there is another class of orbit under the topic of eccentricity that's not meant to stay in a repeating pattern around the earth these are called escape or open orbits and they're used to move vehicles away from the earth in particular ways parabolic orbits are used to complete minimum energy escapes if they're moving away from the earth and captures if they're moving towards a planet hyperbolic orbits can send the vehicle off at a much higher speed these orbits are factors in gravitational slingshots where a vehicle flies by a planet and uses its gravitational pull to pick up speed
there are also terms for the direction a satellite is moving in around the earth pro-grade orbits move in the same direction as the earth rotation and us here below if we were to see a satellite in prograde it would appear to us as if the satellite was moving to the east retrograde means the opposite a satellite in this type of orbit is moving against the rotation of the earth and if we were to see a satellite in retrograde it would appear to us to be moving to the west this type of orbit is rare and it's because of the cost remember what we talked about earlier about using the plaintiff's rotation to help in launches well that doesn't really work very well when you're trying to achieve retrograde
inclinations describe the position of a satellite in relation to the equator of the earth as though it were an angle so a satellite with an inclination of zero would be right above the equator and one with an inclination of 90 or negative 90 is over the north or south pole respectively
all right so there's four types of orbits to talk about with all this in mind leo or low earth orbit is an orbit that happens at 1 240 miles or less above the earth's surface it can be circular or elliptical as can all the other types and a vehicle at this type of orbit would take 128 minutes or less to make a trip around the earth there's a lot of stuff in leo orbit right now around the earth including the international space station
let's take a look at what a leo orbit would look like using some sdk software visualizations notice how close those satellites and orbital paths are to the earth
neo or medium earth orbits happen above that 1 240 mile leo threshold but below 22 236 miles these orbits can take between 2 and 24 hours to get around the earth the coverage or amount of surface the satellite can see at this distance gives us things like gps and other navigation satellite constellations constellations just means there's way more than one satellite doing that job
now let's take a look at what a meal orbit looks like in comparison to leo
geosynchronous orbits happen at that upper meal threshold and match the planet's rotation in a journey around the earth at about 24 hours geostationary orbits are a kind of geosynchronous orbit where it would look to us from below as if the satellite's not moving and that it's fixed in one place this is useful in communications between earth antenna and satellites it's how you get satellite tv and radio
so what's the geosynchronous orbit look like in comparison to the others
lastly there's helo or high earth orbit this is anything beyond the geosynchronous mio threshold naturally these orbits take longer than 24 hours and a vehicle in one of these is actually moving slower than the earth's rotation this is another situation where it would look to us because it's moving slower than the earth's rotation as though the satellite were moving to the west but it's not retrograde this type of orbit is where we park space telescopes and long-range monitoring satellites
now let's put it all together
here's another interesting view where you can see both circular and elliptical orbits at varying distances
sadly all satellites don't go to heaven in the end when a satellite has come to the end of its usefulness the satellites in the lower orbits that we've discussed will be put into a controlled fuel burn and put on a course to burn up in the atmosphere the ones in orbits further out will be guided away from earth into the expanse and that's it hopefully this discussion has scratched the surface of orbital terminology for you and you've learned a couple of new things thanks for your time and enjoy the rest of the conference