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Advancing the Solar Radiation Pressure Model for BeiDou-3 IGSO Satellites

Xia, Fengyu; Ye, Shirong; Chen, Dezhong; Tang, Longjiang; Wang, Chen; Ge, Maorong; Neitzel, Frank

FG Geodäsie und Ausgleichungsrechnung

In the absence of detailed surface information, empirical solar radiation pressure (SRP) models, such as the five-parameter Empirical CODE Orbit Model (ECOM1) and its extended version-ECOM2, are widely used for modeling SRP forces acting on GNSS satellites. This study shows that the orbits of BeiDou-3 Inclined Geosynchronous Orbit satellites (IGSOs) determined with the ECOM1 model suffer from systematic once-per-revolution radial orbit errors, which can be partly reduced by the ECOM2 model. To eliminate such orbit errors, the BeiDou-3 IGSO optical coefficients are solved by using an adjustable box-wing (ABW) model and then introduced into an a priori box-wing SRP model to enhance the ECOM1 model (ECOM1 + BW). In the ABW solution, in addition to satellite body and solar panels, the contributions of the communication payloads installed on BeiDou-3 IGSO ±X panels on the SRP are also considered, which markedly improves the stability of the optical coefficient estimates. The efficiency of the developed a priori box-wing model is demonstrated through eliminated once-per-revolution radial orbit errors and decreased day boundary discontinuities. However, the orbit solutions still show significant degradations during eclipse seasons. The results of the first yaw-attitude analysis for eclipsing BeiDou-3 IGSOs show that their yaw behaviors are the same as those of BeiDou-3 CAST (China Academy of Space Technology) MEOs (Medium Earth Orbit satellites), and have been well considered in the study. This rules out the possibility that attitude errors are the potential reason for the orbit deterioration. By introducing a once-per-revolution sine term in the Sun direction (Ds term) and keeping Ds active during the Earth’s shadow transitions to the ECOM1 + BW model, the orbit performance inside the eclipse seasons is significantly improved and can be comparable to that outside the eclipse seasons.