Satellite Orbit Design and Maintenance for Terrestrial Coverage Academic Article uri icon


  • This paper presents semi-analytical techniques for the study of the coverage by satellites in Earth's orbits. In particular, the coverage by a satellite over a designated area on the Earth's surface is studied as a function of orbital elements. The semi-analytical nature of the methods developed enable the evaluation of several performance metrics associated with the coverage problem without the need for numerical integration of the orbit's parameters over the satellite's lifetime. Results are shown to match very well with those obtained from numerical simulations on a fullscale model. In the second part of the paper, analytical formulas for velocity increments required for orbit maintenance are presented. These formulas are useful for estimating a fuel budget for a particular terrestrial coverage mission. Copyright 2009 by Prasenjit Sengupta, Srinivas R. Vadali, and Kyle T. Alfriend.

published proceedings


author list (cited authors)

  • Sengupta, P., Vadali, S. R., & Alfriend, K. T.

citation count

  • 23

complete list of authors

  • Sengupta, Prasenjit||Vadali, Srinivas R||Alfriend, Kyle T

publication date

  • January 2010