The navigation satellite constellations in medium-Earth orbit exist in a background of third-body secular resonances stemming from the perturbing gravitational effects of the Moon and the Sun. The resulting chaotic motions, emanating from the overlapping of neighboring resonant harmonics, induce especially strong perturbations on the orbital eccentricity, which can be transported to large values, thereby increasing the collision risk to the constellations and possibly leading to a proliferation of space debris. We show here that this transport is of a diffusive nature and we present representative diffusion maps that are useful in obtaining a global comprehension of the dynamical structure of the navigation satellite orbits.
J. Daquin, A. Rosengren and K. Tsiganis
Thu, 2 Jun 16
Comments: 8 pages, 5 figures, conference Chaos, complexity and transport (Marseille, France)