Optimal mixed impulsive and continuous thrust trajectories to the interior Earth-Moon L1 Lagrange point

Daero Lee, Eric A. Butcher, Amit K. Sanyal

Research output: Contribution to journalConference Articlepeer-review


Optimal transfer trajectories are designed for the spacecraft using mixed impulsive and continuous thrust propulsion to depart low-Earth orbit and enter a specified planar Lyapunov orbit at the interior Earth-moon Lagrange point in the framework of the planar circular restricted three body problem. The continuous dynamic optimization problem is reformulated as a discrete optimization through direct transcription and collocation, which then is solved using a nonlinear programming software. Then, the design parameters are specified as the flight time and the thrust weighting factor between impulsive thrust and continuous thrust in advance. Two different types of Earth departure trajectories are designed versus the thrust weighting factor using two separate performance indices. The numerical convergences of these transfer trajectory design methods are verified by producing the transfer trajectories versus varying numbers of nodes. Finally, low Earth orbit transfer trajectories using quadratic performance are designed and discussed by employing the progressive homotopy continuation method.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3963-3982
Number of pages20
JournalAdvances in the Astronautical Sciences
StatePublished - 2013
Externally publishedYes
Event23rd AAS/AIAA Space Flight Mechanics Meeting, Spaceflight Mechanics 2013 - Kauai, HI, United States
Duration: Feb 10 2013Feb 14 2013

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Aerospace Engineering
  • Space and Planetary Science


Dive into the research topics of 'Optimal mixed impulsive and continuous thrust trajectories to the interior Earth-Moon L1 Lagrange point'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this