Minimumtime aerobraking maneuver at constant altitude
Abstract
The minimumtime aerobraking maneuver at constant altitude is studied. The space vehicle has lift capability. Its initial position is specified on the longitudinallatitude surface at a certain high altitude with initial velocity vector given. A very strong final condition with specified final position and final velocity is imposed. The vehicle then performs aerodynamic maneuvers at constant altitude to reach the final condition within the shortest time of flight. In order to minimize the time of flight, the vehicle must try to approach the final position as soon as possible. Then at a certain distance from the final position, it performs a chattering maneuver to decelerate as quickly as possible so that the final speed can be satisfied. Dimensionless equations of motion are derived. For onedimensional flight, analytic solutions for both coasting arc and chattering arc are obtained; for twodimensional flight, a variational formulation is required.
 Publication:

Dresden International Astronautical Federation Congress
 Pub Date:
 October 1990
 Bibcode:
 1990dres.iafcU....C
 Keywords:

 Aerobraking;
 Aeromaneuvering;
 Atmospheric Density;
 Spacecraft Maneuvers;
 Trajectory Optimization;
 Aerodynamic Forces;
 Earth Atmosphere;
 Space Shuttles;
 Astrodynamics