Trajectory of spacecraft with photonic laser propulsion in the two-body problem

Fu Yuen Hsiao*, Tai Hang Wang, Chi Cheng Lee, Pin Chu Yang, Hung Chu Wei, Ping Yen Tsai

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


The photonic laser propulsion (PLP) system can produce continuous and constant thrust. This paper reviews its basics and then studies its application in the two-body interplanetary trajectory. This study also derives the equations of motion (EOM) for a spacecraft in an inertial frame and rotational frame for the two-body problem, and uses the Jacobi integral to investigate the spatial restrictions on trajectory. This study proposes a constraint on the smallest thrust at the launching stage, and finds the in-plane and out-of-plane equilibria. Numerical simulations confirm the validity of the derivations. The results of this paper are directly applicable to future PLP thrust missions, and particularly interplanetary travel.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)215-226
Number of pages12
JournalActa Astronautica
Publication statusPublished - 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Jacobi integral
  • Missions to Mars
  • Photonic laser propulsion
  • Spacecraft trajectory
  • Two-body problem

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Aerospace Engineering


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