A study on the feasibility of lunar farside radio observations using a small satellite based telescope
- Radio astronomers have been able to observe extensively from 300 GHz to 100 MHz in the last sixty years, however observations at lower frequencies are sparse, mainly due to Earth-based interference and noise. There are intriguing scientific questions that have the potential to be answered by observing at these long wavelengths, especially in the field of cosmology, although solar physics, planetary studies, black hole physics, and the possibility of new discoveries are also exciting areas. This thesis looks at radio telescopes currently observing and proposed, and suggests that a lunar orbiting telescope mounted on a small satellite (such as a cubesat) could be a cost effective approach to answering some of these open questions. The specific goal of this study is to determine an orbit that would enable a small satellite to complete such a mission. Starting with analytical models developed in the literature that predict quasi-stable or 'frozen' orbits, high fidelity numerical simulations are run that narrow the orbital parameters to determine a satisfactory solution. The results show that a near circular, 28.5° inclination orbit at 150 km is stable enough over at least two, and up to five years in orbit, giving at least 6400 hours of quiet sky observation time. Finally, studies are performed to determine how accurate orbital insertion must be to meet requirements.
|Type of resource
|electronic; electronic resource; remote
|1 online resource.
|Stanford University, Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics
|Rock, Stephen M
|Rock, Stephen M
|Statement of responsibility
|Submitted to the Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics.
|Thesis (Engineering)--Stanford University, 2012.
- © 2012 by Brenda Scheufele
- This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 Unported license (CC BY-NC).
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