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Improvement of Satellite Tracking Accuracy Using Optical Observations

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2 Author(s)
T. Aruga ; Radio Research Laboratories Ministry of Posts and Telecommunications, Japan ; K. Araki

A method to improve satellite tracking accuracy is presented and discussed theoretically and experimentally in terms of two parts: correction for errors of the tracking system and correction of satellite orbit predictions. In the first part, it is concluded that the pointing error of the tracking system can be determined accurately using data from stellar observations, so that correction is possible with an accuracy of about 0.001°. In the second part, it is shown that apparent errors of satellite orbital elements can be deduced from the optical observation of one orbit, and one can track the satellite after the correction with high accuracy for several subsequent orbits. The accuracy is 0.1-0.2 mrad or better for satellites at 1000 km altitude when given orbit prediction accuracy is approximately 1°.

Published in:

IEEE Transactions on Aerospace and Electronic Systems  (Volume:AES-21 ,  Issue: 4 )