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I was just getting used to “cis” and “trans” for orbits inside and outside the Lunar orbit. “Trans” is a Latin word root meaning “across, beyond, or through”(Meriam Webster).

“Trans” seems like a better choice than “super” (also Latin) meaning “over, above” (Meriam Webster). The key here is whether the object crossed the defining line. Mars may be a “supralunar” body, but it is certainly not “translunar”. A journey to Mars is translunar, but not Mars itself.

On the other hand, a satellite transferred to GSO may have used a “transynchronous” trajectory. But it was only supersynchronous for a short part of its journey.

It’s hard enough to use “cis” and “trans” correctly here on Earth without causing confusion in the Heavens.

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    $\begingroup$ I always read the term as "supersynchronous" = "more than synchronous" = "longer period than synchronous", not as "translunar" = "behind the moon". So, at least for me, it makes sense to have "supersynchronous" and (not actually used) something like "trans-geo-stationary". One is motion-wise, one is position-wise. $\endgroup$
    – asdfex
    Jan 12, 2022 at 10:23

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I know (from personal experience) that the term and concept "supersynchronous" was being used back in the 1980s, at least. That was long, long before anybody started talking about cis-lunar space and the like. Sometimes the terminology isn't consistent, but I guess that's OK as long as we all understand what each other is saying.

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    $\begingroup$ The term "cislunar" was used during Apollo. "The Apollo 12 crew now making preparations for cislunar navigation tasks. " Apollo 12 Flight Journal history.nasa.gov/afj/ap12fj/21day8_cislunar_nav.html $\endgroup$ Jan 15, 2022 at 1:55
  • $\begingroup$ @John McCarthy --- Neologisms are coming at us fast and furious. Elon seams to think everything big is "giga". At least "trans" and "supra" are reasonably synonymous with "beyond". $\endgroup$
    – Woody
    Jan 15, 2022 at 2:43
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To back up @John McCarthy's answer I just happened to run across the following passage from Military Communications - 1968: Hearings Before a Subcommittee of the Committee on Government Operations, House of Representatives which while it doesn't contain "supersynchronous" it does contain "subsynchronous" in reference to LES-5 1967-066E which according to n2yo.com/satellite/?s=2866 has a semimajor axis of 39,779 km and a period of 21.93 hours and a mean motion of 1.0943 orbits per day.

As you know, the MIT-Lincoln Laboratory experimental ultra-high-frequency satellite (LES-5) was successfully launched last July into a subsynchronous equatorial orbit. Since that time, joint test operations have been conducted by the military departments using "off-the-shelf" terminals. In March of this year, the satellite experienced some degradation due to a transistor failure in a preamplifier...

LES-5 position from https://www.n2yo.com/satellite/?s=2866

Here's LES-1 1965-008C for reference from Lincoln_Laboratory_LES-1_1965

Lincoln Laboratory launched LES-1 in 1965 originally from NASA

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