Chapter 8

Exploring Orbits and Sub-Orbits

The initial topic first employs the spreadsheet to explore two orbits, a stationary equatorial orbit about the Earth and Earth's orbit about the Sun. The positions of Earth in a single orbit about the Sun during the period January 3, 2008 through January 3, 2009 are obtained followed by a discussion on systems for expressing the passage of time.

In the second topic, a spreadsheet model is made of Radarsat, a satellite in polar orbit about Earth that provides radar images of Earth's surface to ground stations.

In the third topic, the spreadsheet is employed to model the sub-orbital shelling of Paris in WW1 and to demonstrate the effect of Earth's rotation and curvature on aiming a gun for a distant target.

In the last topic a database is developed for the launch of a passenger-carrying Earth Orbiter to the International Space Station. This database expands on an Internet contribution by William Harwood and attributed to NASA.  The contribution has the appearance of representing a detailed timeline of an actual Orbiter path from its Launch to MECO, Main Engine Cut Off.
Results from the expanded database are then employed to model the sub orbit of the External Fuel Tank from its separation from Orbiter to its splash down in the Indian Ocean. 
The topic concludes with comments on Newton's thought experiment and on Gerald Bull's dream of employing a cannon to launch a satellite into an Earth orbit from Earth's surface.

The topics of this chapter can be accessed by clicking their names.

Topic Name An Image from the Topic Brief Description
Geostationary and Planet Orbits Geosynchronous
Orbit about Earth -
Orbit Parameters

Planetary Orbits - Earth's Orbit about the Sun

Planet Earth - Orbital Characteristics

Information About Time
Radarsat 2 - Satellites in Polar Orbit
Orbit Parameters

Orbit Coverage

Sun Synchronous Orbits 
Application to Long-Range Artillery - Shelling Paris in WW1 Space Guns

Paris Gun

Shell Trajectory in Atmosphere
on a Rotating Earth
More Than One Way to Aim a Cannon
Near-Earth Space Flight with Orbitor - Energy and Thermal Considerations - Newton's Thought Experiment - Bull's Dream The Azimuth of the Velocity of an Orbiter at MECO

Splashdown of the External Fuel Tank

Earth Orbit from Everest's Altitude
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