Questions tagged [interplanetary]

Questions regarding spacecraft designed to travel between planets.

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1answer
157 views

Updating of TAI

In spaceflight keeping track of time between systems widely separated in space (e.g. people on Earth vs spacecraft in deep space) and/or time, moving at substantial relative velocities and in ...
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1answer
143 views

Range of travel time between particular planets using the Interplanetary Transport Network/Interplanetary Superhighway?

I understand the Interplanetary Transport Network allows for travel at low speeds between different planets in the solar system using very little energy. Is there flexibility in how long it would take ...
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1answer
97 views

When the magnetic poles of the Sun flip (once in 11 years), is the Earth hit by more galactic cosmic rays?

The Sun protects us from cosmic rays from beyond the solar system. Every 11 years, the Sun's poles reverse. Solar cosmic rays are greatest during the reversal. During the reversal, are we hit by more ...
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6answers
9k views

Would it be easier to put humans on Venus rather than Mars?

With all the speculation of manned missions to Mars, there is very little talk of a manned mission to Venus (whose orbit is closer to the orbit of Earth than mars is). That being said, would it be ...
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2answers
98 views

Is it possible to send a CubeSat to Saturn/Enceladus?

I was wondering if it is technologically possible to send a CubeSat/Nanosatellites or constellation of nanosatellites to explore the water vapor jets in the southern region of Enceladus in the Saturn ...
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158 views

An orbit in the corner of isosceles right-angled triangle

Is it possible to have a non-escape orbit that is equidistant to two celestial bodies (for example, Earth and Mars) at all times? If possible, how much does it cost to keep an object (which is much ...
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0answers
72 views

Magnetic braking for interplanetary journeys?

One proposed use for a magnetic sail is to allow an interstellar spacecraft to brake as it approaches its destination. But could a magnetic sail also slow down a spacecraft traveling between planets? ...
3
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1answer
143 views

Optimal point in LEO to perform interplanetary injection burn

I wrote a simulation program in Python to calculate Earth <-> Mars trajectories. Now I would like to test it agains well known trajectories. I used NASA Ames Research Center Trajectory Browser ...
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2answers
4k views

Is the concept of the Epstein Drive based on actual theorized scientific research which is considered plausable?

I've always found it interesting when we see real life taking its cues from fictional arts, especially when it comes to Science Fiction technology. There are plenty of examples of classic books, TV ...
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1answer
104 views

Tradeoffs sending a tank of fuel ahead of a crewed mission to another planet?

This is something that I'd seen in the BBC fictional documentary Voyage to the Planets. There, as the crew arrives in the orbit of Mars, there's a tank that has already been sent there so that the ...
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1answer
61 views

How does a spacecraft navigate along and jump between constant v-inf lines depicted in Tisserand graphs?

Below is an example Tisserand graph showing interplanetary trajectories (in bold black). The first one represents a trajectory from Earth till the Mercury system. In the second one, the spacecraft ...
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1answer
43 views

Would a long-term network of relay satellites but worthwhile for interplanetary communication? [duplicate]

Communication rates with probes in the outer solar systems are extremely low (Voyager is ~160 bps), because of the inverse square law and the extreme distances involved. Achieving these rates ...
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1answer
252 views

Why was there never a lander for the Martian north polar cap?

Since the Martian poles are water ice caps, belong to the most likely locations on Mars to host life, and the north pole being the most likely place for a crewed mission, it seems reasonable that one ...
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52 views

Interplanetary space mission debris orbits

I was wondering if anyone knew about a database of orbits for debris from previous interplanetary space missions. I am referring to debris or expired missions by NASA, ESA, JAXA, etc. I know there are ...
5
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1answer
76 views

How much thrust is “high” thrust (for orbital transfers)

I understand that chemical rockets and nuclear thermal rockets (and possibly very high power electrical thrusters) are considered to provide "high" thrust for orbital transfers, while electrical ...
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1answer
101 views

Could the kinetic energy in the Sun's solar wind power an ion propulsion system for an interplanetary spacecraft?

I am wondering if the kinetic energy of the Sun's solar wind could energize heavy ions to the point in which they would produce enough momentum to propel an interplanetary spacecraft. To help ...
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1answer
159 views

Issue with the Gauss problem for solving interplanetary trajectories

Blue is Earth, Red is Mars, Orange is Jupiter and all the whites are Earth to Mars trajectories. The odd trajectory lines in the middle are the problem I'm trying to solve. As you can see in the ...
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1answer
265 views

Will SpaceX Starship have launch abort system? [duplicate]

Since future SpaceX Starship is planned as long duration passenger spacecraft for multiplanetary transport will it have launch abort system? Also how is crew evacuation planned during interplanetary ...
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1answer
139 views

Thrust value for a metallic hydrogen rocket-propelled spacecraft traveling on brachistochrone trajectories?

Using the attached nomogram for computing brachistochrone trajectories to other bodies throughout our solar system, I am working with the assumption that this spacecraft travels with a constant ...
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1answer
148 views

How can the download speed increase from space probes?

It always seems to be a genuine question that is How can we download data from far away probes in instant. When New Horizons reached Ultima Thule, it took us quite a few months to have a great picture ...
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3answers
4k views

Why are we interested in visiting the giant planets' icy moons?

I have noticed lately that future missions by NASA and ESA are targeted towards the moons of Jupiter and Saturn. They mention that they might be a possibility of life; the icy moons they are focusing ...
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2answers
272 views

Interplanetary spacecraft flight operating system and programming language

Which programming languages and operating systems are mostly used for interplanetary satellites (such as a mission to the moon)? To my knowledge, I know some LEO CubeSats use C programming language ...
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2answers
237 views

Two-body problem VS Three-body problem Applications

The two-body problem deals with two bodies under certain assumptions while the restricted three-body problem deals with three bodies where one has a negligible mass (i.e. spacecraft or comet) I was ...
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49 views

Which object has been on other planet(s) or other natural bodies the most times?

Following this answer, and related to this one. Is there any object(s) that travelled to other planet(s) or other natural bodies more than once?
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1answer
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Is it possible to force atmosphere onto a non atmospheric planet?

If you had some way of injecting large masses of gas into a small planets gravitational field, would it form an atmosphere? You would have to pump it at an extreme rate but would it still work if the ...
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0answers
51 views

History of the planetary flyby for gravitational assist; first conception, mathematical demonstration, plan, and execution?

Planetary flybys for gravitational assists are a stable of deep space missions. When did the following things happen? First documented realization that gravitational assists in spaceflight were ...
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2answers
304 views

Is there a list of world wide upcoming space events on the web?

Is there a list of all the international upcoming events like launches, expected arrivals at, and landings on celestial bodies, etc. on the internet ?
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4answers
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Do you need to burn fuel between gravity assists?

If you are planning a mission to an outer planet with multiple gravity assists included, do you need to do some burns for corrections, between the slingshots, or the ideal trajectory is already ...
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2answers
590 views

How will SpaceX's Starship accommodate its 100 passengers from the effects of micro-gravity?

According to this Wikipedia article, Starship will take on average 115 days (3.8 months) to get to Mars and 150 days maximum (4.9 months). with an average trip time to Mars of approximately 115 ...
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2answers
122 views

Do satellites inject into a Hohmann transfer orbit in Low Earth Orbit or in Solar orbit?

Lets say we have a satellite wanting to go to Mars. Do satellites such as MAVEN inject into a Hohmann transfer orbit while in Earth's orbit, or do they go out of Earth's Sphere of Influence into solar ...
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1answer
154 views

How were Venera's variometers able to measure extremely weak, nano-Tesla magnetic fields?

The image below is from the really interesting page Inventing The Interplanetary Probe (linked by @A.Rumlin here). Above the fluxgate magnetometer there is a pair of short tubes labeled "...
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1answer
133 views

How does an onboard atomic clock help interplanetary navigation?

On 2019 June 22, JPL will launch and test the accuracy of an onboard atomic clock. Its FAQ says that it will improve interplanetary navigation because for the ship to determine its position, instead ...
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1answer
192 views

Concepts for interior color of interplanetary crewed spacecraft

I believe saw a documentary, a while back, of concepts for future, interplanetary crewed spacecraft. I thought the discussion included studying the interior colors, and the importance of gradating ...
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1answer
2k views

After the loss of Challenger, why weren’t Galileo and Ulysses launched by Centaurs on expendable boosters?

The Centaur upper stage, the first hydrolox rocket stage ever flown and (in its highly-evolved forms) still one of the most-used, as well as one of the highest-performance (if not the highest-...
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1answer
81 views

History of multiple-payload launches?

Another question asks why Spirit and Opportunity weren't launched together. My gut response was that multiple-payload launches were less common then than they are today, but I don't actually know if ...
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2answers
442 views

Why doesn't NASA plan a manned Venus flyby first? [closed]

After America will have returned to the Moon, why won't NASA make a Venus flyby mission with the Orion/SLS before going on to manned flights to Mars? They are planning crewed missions to Venus (...
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2answers
605 views

Could the BFR Tanker be used as an artificial gravity counterweight for interplanetary travel?

An alternative storyline to the Mars transport architecture: Tankers refuel starship, last Tanker gets mounted on the Starship for the Mars orbital injection burn, once on a Martian trajectory tanker ...
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0answers
198 views

Orbit to Orbit Transport Stage

Would it be faster or cheaper to have a lander, SSTO, and/or SpaceX Mars rocket to rendezvous connect with a more efficient engine or "transport stage" or another lander, SSTO? When the spacecraft ...
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2answers
121 views

What is a safe speed in space for spacecraft?

Does traveling fast as possible shortening the duration of the mission lessen chances of collision or mechanical failure, or does traveling slower in space in some way safer?
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121 views

Probing gas giant planets by descending through a cyclones's “eye”?

On Earth cyclones have regions of calm weather commonly known as eyes. They appear to create tunnels spreading from the top of the atmosphere down to the sea level. Wikipedia article mentions their ...
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1answer
21 views

What are the trade-offs to use a radio relay orbiter also as a radar science instrument?

Any landed mission could benefit from having an orbiting radio relay satellite to help enhance its data rate to Earth. For polar landers on for example the Moon or Mercury it would be a necessity. For ...
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3answers
369 views

Titan vs Mars for colonization

This question is along the same vein as Venus vs Mars for colonization but without the person at the table. Is Mars better than Titan which to me seems a more realistic option for colonization? With ...
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2answers
2k views

Traveling through the asteriod belt?

The question What's the (particle) density of the asteroid belt? is about the density of objects in the asteroid belt. As a follow up related question and what I am interested in: When we send ...
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2answers
234 views

What are the limiting factors for interplanetary mission trajectories?

Besides the hard limit of available Delta V, and the soft limit of the time to destination, what are the main constraints when planning an interplanetary mission? I'm thinking things like maximum ...
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2answers
3k views

Pictures from Mars

How is it that NASA receives broadcasts from 300 million miles away but Sprint needs to install transmitters every 500ft for 5G wireless?
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2answers
2k views

Travel Speed in Space

I have read several questions and answers here concerning achieving speeds beyond the typical deep-space exploration missions. While speed increases near the Sun for example, that can't be applied to ...
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1answer
356 views

Is a ballistic blimp entry possible on this way?

Could the entry of Mars with balloons work by inflating to equalize with the atmospheric air pressure, while establishing buoyancy before meeting the ground? Would a balloon pop if dropped from space?...
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1answer
353 views

Liquid shield for spacecraft? [closed]

Could an alloy of hot or cold liquid metal be made magnetic by adding electricity to the molten ball to give it magnetic properties to wirelessly attach it to a space craft to use as a shield shown in ...
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2answers
428 views

How does the speed and volume of particles differ in producing thrust in space?

Does a slower detonation velocity push a ship more the same way explosives with a slower detonation velocity moves dirt better? At the same rate does slower particles produce more thrust from a ...
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1answer
114 views

Does a one way mission to Mars make more economic and scientific sense than a two way mission?

A one way mission skips any return rocket needs, extends the research mission by decades and slowly builds up the infrastructure on the surface. The longer mission on Mars would require regular ...