319 research outputs found

    Experimental validation of phase space conduits of transition between potential wells

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    A phase space boundary between transition and non-transition, similar to those observed in chemical reaction dynamics, is shown experimentally in a macroscopic system. We present a validation of the phase space flux across rank one saddles connecting adjacent potential wells and confirm the underlying phase space conduits that mediate the transition. Experimental regions of transition are found to agree with the theory to within 1\%, suggesting the robustness of phase space conduits of transition in a broad array of two or more degree of freedom experimental systems, despite the presence of small dissipation.Comment: 7 pages, 6 figure

    Constructing a Low Energy Transfer Between Jovian Moons

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    There has recently been considerable interest in sending a spacecraft to orbit Europa, the smallest of the four Galilean moons of Jupiter. The trajectory design involved in effecting a capture by Europa presents formidable challenges to traditional conic analysis since the regimes of motion involved depend heavily on three-body dynamics. New three-body perspectives are required to design successful and efficient missions which take full advantage of the natural dynamics. Not only does a three-body approach provide low-fuel trajectories, but it also increases the flexibility and versatility of missions. We apply this approach to design a new mission concept wherein a spacecraft "leap-frogs" between moons, orbiting each for a desired duration in a temporary capture orbit. We call this concept the "Petit Grand Tour." For this application, we apply dynamical systems techniques developed in a previous paper to design a Europa capture orbit. We show how it is possible, using a gravitional boost from Ganymede, to go from a jovicentric orbit beyond the orbit of Ganymede to a ballistic capture orbit around Europa. The main new technical result is the employment of dynamical channels in the phase space - tubes in the energy surface which naturally link the vicinity of Ganymede to the vicinity of Europa. The transfer V necessary to jump from one moon to another is less than half that required by a standard Hohmann transfer