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Trajectory AnalysisThe Systems Analysis Branch performs trajectory and systems analysis for next-generation launch vehicle and space transportation technologies. Currently the branch is supporting the Project Prometheus with analysis of nuclear electric and nuclear thermal propulsion missions to a variety of destinations. Within Project Prometheus a proposed mission to Jupiter and three of the planet sized icy moons that orbit it is developing. The Jupiter Icy Moons Orbiter (JIMO) as the project is being called will enable detailed scientific investigation of Jupiter's moons Callisto, Ganymede, and Europa. These moons were choose to orbit for intensive study in particular because they are each believed to have water, energy, and organic material. The JIMO mission will utilize nuclear fission power and electric propulsion in order to allow the spacecraft to orbit the moons at close range for long durations of time. My assignment this summer was to assist in developing a trajectory analysis for the spacecraft system the Jupiter Icy Moons Orbiter by rewriting an inefficient Excel file into a more efficient FORTRAN program. This program has been created for use planning the trajectory of the Jupiter Icy Moons Orbiter Mission. The program uses a database of thousands of data points representing flight time, burn time, thrust, mass of the propellant used, final mass of the spacecraft, ratio of finals mass to initial mass, and change in velocity that a spacecraft experiences during each phase in the Jupiter Icy Moons Orbiter Mission. The trajectory program is capable of taking a specific user entered specific impulse (isp), final mass fraction, and thrust (P(sub J)/m0) and through the use of cubic splines to fit specific data curves, the program can locate the exact flight time linked to the user specified values of specific impulse and final over initial mass fraction. Currently, the database used by the program to calculate flight times for a given thrust is only for isps in the range of 2000 to 9000 seconds. Although the program is specific to the Jupiter Icy Moons Orbiter mission, it can be easily modified to fit any mission with a propulsion system expected isp range between 2000 and 9000 seconds. This program performs the same tasks as the old Excel file but in a more timely fashion. Finally, this FORTRAN program will replace the Excel file as the tool used to calculate trajectory properties in missions and will provide valuable data to mission analysts for years to come.
Document ID
Acquisition Source
Document Type
Burke, Laura M.
(Case Western Reserve Univ. United States)
Date Acquired
August 23, 2013
Publication Date
January 1, 2004
Publication Information
Publication: Research Symposium I
Subject Category
Systems Analysis And Operations Research
Distribution Limits
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.

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