To prepare for a Korean lunar orbiter mission, a precise lunar orbit propagator; Yonsei precise lunar orbit propagator (YSPLOP) is developed. In the propagator, accelerations due to the Moon's non-spherical gravity, the point masses of the Earth, Moon, Sun, Mars, Jupiter and also, solar radiation pressures can be included. The developed propagator's performance is validated and propagation errors between YSPOLP and STK/Astrogator are found to have about maximum 4-m, in along-track direction during 30 days (Earth's time) of propagation. Also, it is found that the lifetime of a lunar polar orbiter is strongly affected by the different degrees and orders of the lunar gravity model, by a third body's gravitational attractions (especially the Earth), and by the different orbital inclinations. The reliable lifetime of circular lunar polar orbiter at about 100 km altitude is estimated to have about 160 days (Earth's time). However, to estimate the reasonable lifetime of circular lunar polar orbiter at about 100 km altitude, it is strongly recommended to consider at least 50 × 50 degrees and orders of the lunar gravity field. The results provided in this paper are expected to make further progress in the design fields of Korea's lunar orbiter missions.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Physics and Astronomy(all)
- Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)