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- Unclassified, Unlimited, Publicly available.
- This report presents new theoretical results which lead to new algorithms for the computation of fuel-optimal multiple-burn orbit transfers of low and medium thrust. Theoretical results introduced herein show how to add burns to an optimal trajectory and show that the traditional set of necessary conditions may be replaced with a much simpler set of equations. Numerical results are presented to demonstrate the utility of the theoretical results and the new algorithms. Two indirect methods from the literature are shown to be effective for the optimal orbit transfer problem with relatively small numbers of burns. These methods are the Minimizing Boundary Condition Method (MBCM) and BOUNDSCO. Both of these methods make use of the first-order necessary conditions exactly as derived by optimal control theory. Perturbations due to Earth's oblateness and atmospheric drag are considered. These perturbations are of greatest interest for transfers that take place between low Earth orbit altitudes and geosynchronous orbit altitudes. Example extremal solutions including these effects and computed by the aforementioned methods are presented. An investigation is also made into a suboptimal multiple-burn guidance scheme. The FORTRAN code developed for this study has been collected together in a package named ORBPACK. ORBPACK's user manual is provided as an appendix to this report.
- NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS) Collection.
- Document ID: 19960049601.
Accession ID: 96N33928.
- No Copyright.
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