Potential effects of optical solar sail degradation on trajectory design

Bernd Dachwald, Volodymyr Baturkin, Victoria L. Coverstone, Benjamin Diedrich, Gregory P. Garbe, Marianne Görlich, Manfred Leipold, Franz Luratt, Malcolm Macdonald, Colin R. McInnes, Giovanni Mengali, Alessandro A. Quarta, Leonel Rios-Reyes, Daniel J. Scheeres, Wolfgang Seboldt, Bong Wie

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

The optical properties of the thin metalized polymer films that are projected for solar sails are assumed to be affected by the erosive effects of the space environment. Their degradation behavior in the real space environment, however, is to a considerable degree indefinite, because initial ground test results are controversial and relevant inspace tests have not been made so far. The standard optical solar sail models that are currently used for trajectory design do not take optical degradation into account, hence its potential effects on trajectory design have not been investigated so far. Nevertheless, optical degradation is important for high-fidelity solar sail mission design, because it decreases both the magnitude of the solar radiation pressure force acting on the sail and also the sail control authority. Therefore, we propose a simple parametric optical solar sail degradation model that describes the variation of the sail film's optical coefficients with time, depending on the sail film's environmental history, i.e., the radiation dose. The primary intention of our model is not to describe the exact behavior of specific film-coating combinations in the real space environment, but to provide a more general parametric framework for describing the general optical degradation behavior of solar sails. Using our model, the effects of different optical degradation behaviors on trajectory design are investigated for various exemplary missions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationAstrodynamics 2005 - Advances in the Astronautical Sciences - Proceedings of the AAS/AIAA Astrodynamics Conference
Pages2569-2591
Number of pages23
StatePublished - Oct 9 2006
EventAstrodynamics 2005 - Advances in the Astronautical Sciences - Proceedings of the AAS/AIAA Astrodynamics Conference - South Lake Tahoe, CA, United States
Duration: Aug 7 2005Aug 11 2005

Publication series

NameAdvances in the Astronautical Sciences
Volume123 III
ISSN (Print)0065-3438

Other

OtherAstrodynamics 2005 - Advances in the Astronautical Sciences - Proceedings of the AAS/AIAA Astrodynamics Conference
CountryUnited States
CitySouth Lake Tahoe, CA
Period8/7/058/11/05

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ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Aerospace Engineering
  • Space and Planetary Science

Cite this

Dachwald, B., Baturkin, V., Coverstone, V. L., Diedrich, B., Garbe, G. P., Görlich, M., Leipold, M., Luratt, F., Macdonald, M., McInnes, C. R., Mengali, G., Quarta, A. A., Rios-Reyes, L., Scheeres, D. J., Seboldt, W., & Wie, B. (2006). Potential effects of optical solar sail degradation on trajectory design. In Astrodynamics 2005 - Advances in the Astronautical Sciences - Proceedings of the AAS/AIAA Astrodynamics Conference (pp. 2569-2591). (Advances in the Astronautical Sciences; Vol. 123 III).