Coupling among pitch motion, axial vibration, and orbital motion of large space structures

Kosei Ishimura*, Ken Higuchi

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Citations (Scopus)


The parameter dependency of large space structures on the coupling among attitude motion, structural vibration, and orbital motion has been investigated, particularly for structures such as tethered satellite systems. Tethered satellites are noticed for their possible applications. From space solar power systems to deorbit system, the applications of tethered satellites spread out over various fields. In this paper, we investigate planar motion of a satellite model, which consists of two tip particles and a massless spring. For such a space structure, the characteristics of the planar motion are shown to be determined by the mass ratio of tip particles, the natural frequency ratio of axial vibration to orbital motion, and the axial length ratio of the spring to the orbital radius. Among these three parameters, the natural frequency ratio has the greatest influence on the coupling phenomenon. Furthermore, the parameter range over which the coupling phenomenon occurs is specified.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)61-71
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Aerospace Engineering
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2008 Mar 24
Externally publishedYes


  • Aerospace engineering
  • Space structures
  • Structural dynamics
  • Vibration

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • General Materials Science
  • Aerospace Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering


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