Optimisation of Low-Thrust and Hybrid Earth-Moon Transfers

Sullo, N. , De Sousa Silva, P. A., Terra, M. O. and Ceriotti, M. (2016) Optimisation of Low-Thrust and Hybrid Earth-Moon Transfers. In: 67th International Astronautical Congress (IAC 2016), Guadalajara, Mexico, 26-30 Sept 2016,

129154.pdf - Accepted Version



This paper presents an optimization procedure to generate fast and low-∆v Earth-Moon transfer trajectories, by exploiting the multi-body dynamics of the Sun-Earth-Moon system. Ideal (first-guess) trajectories are generated at first, using two coupled planar circular restricted three-body problems, one representing the Earth-Moon system, and one representing the Sun-Earth. The trajectories consist of a first ballistic arc in the Sun-Earth system, and a second ballistic arc in the Earth-Moon system. The two are connected at a patching point at one end (with an instantaneous ∆v), and they are bounded at Earth and Moon respectively at the other end. Families of these trajectories are found by means of an evolutionary optimization method. Subsequently, they are used as first-guess for solving an optimal control problem, in which the full three-dimensional 4-body problem is introduced and the patching point is set free. The objective of the optimisation is to reduce the total ∆v, and the time of flight, together with introducing the constraints on the transfer boundary conditions and of the considered propulsion technology. Sets of different optimal trajectories are presented, which represents trade-off options between ∆v and time of flight. These optimal transfers include conventional solar-electric low-thrust and hybrid chemical/solar-electric high/low-thrust, envisaging future spacecraft that can carry both systems. A final comparison is made between the optimal transfers found and only chemical high-thrust optimal solutions retrieved from literature.

Item Type:Conference Proceedings
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Ceriotti, Dr Matteo and Sullo, Nicola and De Sousa Silva, Dr Priscilla Andre
Authors: Sullo, N., De Sousa Silva, P. A., Terra, M. O., and Ceriotti, M.
College/School:College of Science and Engineering > School of Engineering > Systems Power and Energy
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2016 by Sullo, de Sousa-Silva, O. Terra and Ceriotti.
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