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Mars moon & satellite orbits problem

  1. Dec 22, 2009 #1
    I've been struggling with orbit calculations for Mars' moons and satellites. My Phobos and Deimos orbits look correct - orbital velocity and radius seem to be accurate. But satellites with pronounced eccentricity and/or inclination don't seem to work at all.

    What I do during each frame is:
    1) Calculate a new True Anomaly (v) and use that for orbit angle.
    2) Calculate an new orbit radius using r = a(1 - e^2) / (1 + e cos v).
    3) Calculate x = r * cos(i) * sin(v);
    4) Calculate y = r * sin(i) * -cos(v);
    5) Calculate z = r * cos(i) * cos(v);

    Orbital elements are from Horizons and/or Celestia. It's distressing because the moons and some satellites look fine and other satellites are way off.

    Thanks in advance.

  2. jcsd
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