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Heliocentric solar sail orbit transfers with locally optimal control laws

Dachwald, Bernd and Macdonald, M. and McInnes, Colin (2007) Heliocentric solar sail orbit transfers with locally optimal control laws. Journal of Spacecraft and Rockets, 44 (1). pp. 273-276. ISSN 0022-4650

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Abstract

Solar sailing is increasingly being considered by space agencies for future science missions. With the absence of reaction mass from the primary propulsion system arises the potential for new high-energy mission concepts in the mid to far term, such as a Solar Polar Orbiter or an Interstellar Heliopause Probe [1,2]. One of the most time consuming tasks of mission analysis is trajectory generation and optimization. Optimal trajectory generation is a complex field and many schemes exist; however, these are typically characterized as being computationally intensive systems requiring a good degree of engineering judgment [3-6].