Analytical mechanics of asteroid disassembly using the Orbital Siphon effect

Viale, A., McInnes, C. and Ceriotti, M. (2018) Analytical mechanics of asteroid disassembly using the Orbital Siphon effect. Proceedings of the Royal Society of London Series A: Mathematical, Physical and Engineering Sciences, 474(2220), 20180594. (doi:10.1098/rspa.2018.0594)

Viale, A., McInnes, C. and Ceriotti, M. (2018) Analytical mechanics of asteroid disassembly using the Orbital Siphon effect. Proceedings of the Royal Society of London Series A: Mathematical, Physical and Engineering Sciences, 474(2220), 20180594. (doi:10.1098/rspa.2018.0594)

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Abstract

A chain of tether-connected payload masses assembled from the surface material of a spherical rotating asteroid is envisaged as a means of delivering a fraction of the asteroid mass into orbit, without the need of external work to be done. Under conditions to be discussed, a net radial force is established on the chain which can be exploited to initialize an orbital siphon effect: new payloads are connected to the chain while top payloads are removed and released into orbit. Adopting simplifying assumptions, the underlying dynamics of the problem is entirely analytical and is investigated in detail. The amount of mass extractable from the asteroid is then discussed, according to a range of strategies. It is proposed that the scheme could in future provide an efficient means of extracting material resources from rotating Near Earth Asteroids.

Item Type:Articles
Additional Information:This work was supported by a College of Science and Engineering Scholarship (A.V.) and a Royal Society Wolfson Research Mertit Award (C.M.).
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Ceriotti, Dr Matteo and Viale, Andrea and McInnes, Professor Colin
Authors: Viale, A., McInnes, C., and Ceriotti, M.
College/School:College of Science and Engineering
College of Science and Engineering > School of Engineering > Systems Power and Energy
Journal Name:Proceedings of the Royal Society of London Series A: Mathematical, Physical and Engineering Sciences
Publisher:The Royal Society
ISSN:1364-5021
ISSN (Online):1471-2946
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2018 The Authors
First Published:First published in Proceedings of the Royal Society of London Series A: Mathematical, Physical and Engineering Sciences 474(2220):20180594
Publisher Policy:Reproduced in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher

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