Topic outline

  • Introduction

    logo

    In the following sections we will study how to launch a spacecraft from Earth to Mars using that path that requires the least amount of fuel (Hohmann Transfer). The whole problem is structured in two sections which are related to the characteristics of the orbits, i.e.

    • of satellites,
    • how to change a trajectory,
    • calculating the appropriate time to launch and
    • with the time allowed for the launch to take place.

    No difficult math are required to perform the activity. The student using simulations can approach the problem in an exploratory way and answer the various questions asked.

    I hope it's constructive and enjoyable to deal with this issue.

     

     

  • Orbits

      

      

    After the end of the section you will be able to:

    • distinguish the orbits of bodies in the gravitational field of the Sun,
    • identify an orbit based on its eccentricity and the energy of the body that traverses that orbit,
    • to define the concepts perihelion, aphelion, semi-major axes,
    • compare the velocities of bodies in the perihelion and the aphelion,
    • to inquire the relation of the period with the semi-major axes of the elliptical orbit,
    • to formulate Kepler's first and third laws

    I hope it's constructive and enjoyable to deal with this issue.


  • Hohmann Transfer

    Highlighted

    After the end of the section you will be able to:

    • analyze the basic principles for launching a spacecraft from Earth to Mars using the least fuel (Hohmann Transfer),
    • calculate the time it takes a spaceship to reach Mars,
    • to know when is the right time to launch the spacecraft and after how long it will be the right time to launch again,
    • explore all of the above with a more accurate 3D model of the orbits of Earth and Mars.

  • Help

    Here you will find a demo file explaining the basic functions of a simulation.

  • Theoretical background