Questions tagged [artificial-satellite]

Questions about objects in orbit which are human made, such as communications and GPS satellites, orbital observatories and space stations, and other man-made object in permanent or semi-permanent orbits around the Earth, other celestial objects, aside from the Sun, or even other satellites. Not to be confused with non-orbited man-made objects in space, that are usually referred to as "probes", or simply "spacecraft".

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After the ISS which other artificial satellites are the best candidates to try to resolve in a telescope?

This question was asked on the initiative of the user @uhoh here. I have a Sky-Watcher 10 inch Dobson telescope, equiped with a proper solar filter. Last year, I wanted to observe some satellites ...
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At which speed and angle should satellite be to orbit in longitude line?

At which speed and angle should satellite be to orbit in a longitude line (on Greenwich line, for example) ? most satellites I know move in latitude lines (equator line), or just a part of longitude ...
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Measuring and analyzing the tumble of space debris

How well or accurately can we measure the tumble of space debris? I know that we can make ground-based measurements based on light curve data acquired by telescopes. Can tumble be measured from radar ...
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169 views

How many existing satellites have a continuously varying orbit because of human design decisions?

In the space community, there is an assumption that changes to an Earth satellite's orbit are infrequent (other than those due to atmospheric drag). Are there any known satellites designed to ...
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4answers
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Do space industry companies want their defunct satellites back?

Space junk debate aside, many large satellite companies (and governments too) are responsible for a large number of both operational and defunct sats that are still in orbit. When other companies or ...
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2answers
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What type of battery technology does Mars Odyssey use?

The Mars Odyssey orbiter is currently the longest-serving spacecraft at Mars. Launched and put into service in 2001, it continues to take infrared pictures and gamma-ray spectra of the Martian ...
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Why aluminum is added in Multi Layer Insulation?

Aluminum is a highly conductive material. Instead of insulating the system from heat, it conducts. Multi-Layer Insulation aims to protect spacecraft from extreme heat by acting as a thermal barrier. ...
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Which satellite constellations are already operational in LEO (Low Earth Orbit)?

I am researching information on active and operational constellations in LEO (Low Earth Orbit) but from what I can see, many missions are still only planned (e.g. OneWeb, Amazon) and the only one ...
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Could a single CubeSat provide location services on another celestial body such as Mars? Could a constellation do it?

From my understanding, by having two satellites emit a signal simultaneously (carrying atomic clocks to achieve it), a ground device could measure the difference in times of arrival to determine its ...
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Are there any satellites in geosynchronous orbits that are neither geostationary nor 'wobbly geostastionary' (figure of eight geostationary)?

None of the examples in this question: Are there any satellites in geosynchronous but not geostationary orbits? are nothing like geostationary. They still stay above the one side of the earth. What ...
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1answer
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Telemetry: How do we manage to get a message to a tiny satellite that may be millions of kilometers away?

I saw a series of half hour documentaries on various satellites that had been sent out to explore various aspects of our solar system and found myself wondering how we aim our telemetry signals to hit ...
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What is the density of the earth's atmosphere at an altitude of four hundred kilometers?

What is the density of the earth's atmosphere at an altitude of four hundred kilometers? I want to use it to calculate the drag on something in orbit near the ISS. The Jacchia Reference Atmosphere is ...
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What would be the most appropriate shape for a satellite going to mars?

What kind of shape would be best for a satellite studying mars?
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Future trends in Earth Observation and Communications from VLEO; are there any?

Question: In order to better understand the wider market need and uses for Very Low Earth Orbit (VLEO)-enabling technologies, I'd like to ask about future trends in Earth observation imagery and ...
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1answer
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Satellites below perigee on Stuff in Space website

A friend of mine noticed that many satellites on Stuff in Space website can reach an altitude lower than their declared perigee, as you can see in the following screenshot: We observed these ...
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2answers
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Can we determine the position of an artificial satellite using Kepler's parameters?

I have read that an orbit is defined by Kepler's parameters, so is it possible to determine an exact position of an artificial satellite using those parameters? Forgive me if this is a redundant ...
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Is there an archive of the Satellite Times magazine from the mid-late 90s?

More of an misc. question. I am looking for the "Satellite Times" magazine which seems like it was in print in the mid-late 1990s. Part of the articles published there could be found at ...
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134 views

Ephemeris output from Skyfield

Is it possible to use Skyfield to propagate a TLE forwards and then output its ephemeris, rather than geometric x,y,z at some point in the future? I've worked through the examples in the API and may ...
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Why are minimum three artificial satellites required for radio-communication all around the Earth?

Artificial satellites orbiting the Earth have important applications for radio-communication around it. To avoid the blockage of radio-communication around the Earth, multiple satellites can be ...
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Why are Hubble's magnetorquers angled?

Watching a video on how Hubble attitude control works I saw one portion on magnetorquers. It has four for redundancy but they are angled in a way that looks awkward from a packaging viewpoint, so what ...
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How do I find my coordinates using x, y and z variables and trilateration?

For a school project, I was really interested in finding my own location using information from satellites, by using trilateration (so basically do what GPS are doing but by myself and with some math)....
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How do I find my coordinates (on Earth) using satellite information? [duplicate]

I was really interested in finding my own location using information from satellites, by using trilateration (so basically do what GPS are doing but by myself and with some math). I don't really know ...
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1answer
309 views

Why do we have so many inactive satellites over mars?

I was reading this question and wondered why there were so many that were inactive. Considering the cost to build/launch/ship them, and that they are mostly powered by solar energy, why would they go ...
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Why does ESA's TGO satellite not permanently serve as relay for Perseverance?

This question is about the orbital parameters of ESA's ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter (TGO), so I am optimisitic that it belongs on astronomy SE. More specifically, it is about the orbital geometry of TGO ...
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1answer
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How much power do radiation-based engines produce

I heard that the Voyager satellites used a radioactive source to power the computer and sensor systems. How much power can this technique produce nowadays? Could it power, say, a fighting robot? ...
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Why do AST SpaceMobile satellites have antennas much larger than Starlink, whereas they both aim at providing network coverage anywhere on earth?

I read on cnbc.com (mirror): AST drew the attention of NASA in October, when the U.S. space agency commented on the company’s FCC proposal and said AST’s “extremely large satellites” would create “an ...
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Understanding the paper “Determination of Satellite Orbital Elements by Means of On-Board GPS Receiver and Its Verification” by Yoshiwo Okamoto et. al

I have been assigned with implementing the algorithm proposed in the paper "Determination of Satellite Orbital Elements by Means of On-Board GPS Receiver and Its Verification" by Yoshiwo ...
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Setting up orbit propagation in Orekit

Please forgive my ignorance, I'm new to orbital dynamics. I am using Orekit [https://www.orekit.org/] for orbital propagation in order to determine rise and set times for a MEO satellite, and am ...
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How is satellite's footprint/coverage calculated?

I was using Orbitron - Satellite Tracking software the other day and I saw that clicking on any of the satellites, you will see their footprint (they are usually not-ideal circles, usually ellipses), ...
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What if we launched rockets from space using the slingshot method and centripetal force? Would that be possible?

Would we have to build a orbiting launch station that uses centripetal force to launch the rockets? Or a station that freely floats through space not in a planets orbit? Would something like this ...
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Timeline of record multiple satellite launches

The Transporter 1 mission has placed 143 satellites into low orbit in one go. The previous record was held by the Indian ISRO PSLV C37 mission with 104 satellites in 2017. Where can I find a complete ...
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What is the first time that two satellites were launched together as the same payload?

Below I've assembled some research into the question of which launch is actually the first to carry two satellites into orbit, but so far I think the results are inconclusive. So despite there being ...
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3answers
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Orbital launches

In the 1950s, many US rockets were capable of reaching the lower limit of LEO altitude. Despite this, no one thought of making the launch vehicle / its payload orbit around earth, even for one ...
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First satellite dispenser?

A rocket upper stage, sometimes called kick stage, is the last stage of a rocket and it is used to deploy satellites in orbit. A space tug is a spacecraft released from the upper stage and it is used ...
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What ever happened to 6Q0B44E - potentially the “artificial satellite (with) the farthest orbit around the Earth”?

I just started flipping through Handbook of Space Engineering Archaeology, and Heritage Space Hardware Ann Darrin & Beth L. O'Leary, Eds. 2009, CRC Press, Boca Raton, 1035 pages It looks as though ...
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1answer
87 views

Satellites Orbital Parameters

I want to access satellites' orbital parameters like inclination, right ascension of ascending node and argument of perigee. Unfortunately, I haven't been able to find this information. Is there a ...
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1answer
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Was the nature of Explorer 3's orbit intentional?

A number of early spacecraft launched into orbits other than the intended one. For example, Explorer 1's apogee of 2550 km was much higher than intended, and Vostok 1's was too high to decay in the ...
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1answer
101 views

Would 2 areostationary satellites around Mars, over opposite longitudes, allow constant communication with rovers?

I've heard that rovers on the surface of Mars can only communicate with and send data to orbiters for only 8 minutes at a time. Wouldn't two areostationary_orbit satellites orbiting opposite to each ...
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1answer
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Is SOHO a satellite of the Sun or of the Earth?

Those artificial satellites placed in the Lagrange points, like SOHO, are they orbiting the Sun or the Earth? Or is it a satellite of both?
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1answer
119 views

Most slow artificial satellite in circular Earth orbit? [closed]

What is or was the Earth satellite with a relatively circular orbit that takes longest to make a single orbit? Say the ratio between the diameters is not greater than 1.5 (big/small)
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What is the altitude of a surface-synchronous orbit around the Moon?

A geostationary equatorial orbit (GEO) is a circular geosynchronous orbit in the plane of the Earth's equator with a radius of approximately 42,164 km (26,199 mi) (measured from the center of the ...
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Longest duration of a Moon orbiter?

From all the spacecraft that orbit or orbited the Moon, which one lasted the longest in lunar orbit? By defunct spacecraft includes.
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1answer
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Lowest orbit of Mars orbiters?

There were a lot of orbiters sent to Mars already. From all the Mars orbiters which one had the lowest altitude?
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What is the lowest possible stable Mars orbit?

Due to atmospheric drag, the lowest altitude above the Earth at which an object in a circular orbit can complete at least one full revolution without propulsion is approximately 150 km (93 mi) while ...
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Using electrodynamic tethers for countering precession?

One of the potential uses of electrodynamic tethers for satellites is generating thrust without needing to expend reaction mass. Could this potentially be used to counteract precession, allowing ...
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3answers
2k views

What is the fastest satellite in Earth orbit?

A satellite in Earth orbit needs some 7.8 km/s as orbital velocity. From all the satellites in Earth orbit ever launched which one has or had the highest speed?
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How did the Space telescopes lose their coolant helium?

How did the Planck satellite lose its helium? Spitzer, Herschel had the same problem. How was it consumed? How come other satellites, like Hubble, don't have this problem? And basic logic says that ...
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1answer
107 views

Local observer coordinate system at satellite panel (LVLH coordinate system)

In skyfield I want to calculate alt-az distance from one reference satellite to next (for antenna pointing simulation). My current workaround is to create the reference observer at sat1 height and ...
3
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1answer
158 views

Tutorial for orbits from TLE data

I've been looking for a new hobby, and have been reading some about satellite tracking. I was wondering if there was a good tutorial that walks through how to use TLE data. So far I have found ...
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58 views

When B is directly below A, as shown, what's B’s velocity (in vector notation) relative to A?

Spacecraft A and B are in coplanar circular orbits around the Earth. The orbital radii are as shown in the figure. (Not looking to use C-W equation. Just the equation describing relative velocity ...

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