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Mathematical Problems in Engineering
Volume 2014, Article ID 359845, 15 pages
Research Article

Effects of the Eccentricity of a Perturbing Third Body on the Orbital Correction Maneuvers of a Spacecraft

1Universidade Estadual Paulista (UNESP), São João da Boa Vista, SP, Brazil
2Instituto Nacional de Pesquisas Espaciais (INPE), 12227-010 São José dos Campos, SP, Brazil
3Universidade Estadual Paulista (UNESP), 12516-410 Guaratinguetá, SP, Brazil

Received 25 January 2014; Revised 21 April 2014; Accepted 17 May 2014; Published 3 July 2014

Academic Editor: Maria Cecilia Zanardi

Copyright © 2014 R. C. Domingos et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The fuel consumption required by the orbital maneuvers when correcting perturbations on the orbit of a spacecraft due to a perturbing body was estimated. The main goals are the measurement of the influence of the eccentricity of the perturbing body on the fuel consumption required by the station keeping maneuvers and the validation of the averaged methods when applied to the problem of predicting orbital maneuvers. To study the evolution of the orbits, the restricted elliptic three-body problem and the single- and double-averaged models are used. Maneuvers are made by using impulsive and low thrust maneuvers. The results indicated that the averaged models are good to make predictions for the orbital maneuvers when the spacecraft is in a high inclined orbit. The eccentricity of the perturbing body plays an important role in increasing the effects of the perturbation and the fuel consumption required for the station keeping maneuvers. It is shown that the use of more frequent maneuvers decreases the annual cost of the station keeping to correct the orbit of a spacecraft. An example of an eccentric planetary system of importance to apply the present study is the dwarf planet Haumea and its moons, one of them in an eccentric orbit.