AERSP/STS 055 Space Science & Technology 

Lecture Notes 
Working in Space
Satellite in 300 km orbit, period = 90.51 min, speed = 7.726 km/sec
If satellite leads Shuttle by 15 degrees (around the circle), then how long does or how many orbits for Shuttle to catch it?
a = separation angle = 15 degrees in this problem
R_{1} = 360 deg/90.31 min = 3.986 deg/min (Shuttle rate)
R_{2} = 360 deg/90.51 min = 3.977 deg/min (satellite rate)
R_{r} = R_{1}  R_{2} = 3.986 deg/min  3.977 deg/min = 0.009 deg/min (relative rate)
Time to rendezvous = a/R_{r}
= 15 deg /0.009 deg./min. = 1667 min. = approx. 18 orbits.
Copyright © 1998, Robert G. Melton
Updated Wednesday, 21Jan2004 10:03:27 EST
AERSP/STS 055 Space Science & Technology 