Sanmartín Losada, Juan Ramón and Charro, Mario and Lorenzini, Enrico C. and Garret, Henry B. and Bramanti, Cristina and Bombardelli, Claudio
Electrodynamic tether at Jupiter 2. Tour missions after capture.
In: "10th Spacecraft Charging Technology Conference", 18-21 jun, Biarritz.
Three separate scenarios of an electrodynamic tether mission at Jupiter following capture of a spacecraft (SC) into an equatorial, highly elliptical orbit around the planet, with perijove at about 1.5 times the Jovian radius,
are discussed. Repeated application of Lorentz drag on the spinning tether, at the perijove vicinity, can progressively lower the apojove. One mission involves the tethered-SC rapidly and frequently visiting Galilean moons;
elliptical orbits with apojove down at the Ganymede, Europa, and Io orbits are in 2:5, 4:9, and 1:2 resonances with the respective moons. About 20 slow flybys of Io would take place before the accumulated radiation dose exceeds 3 Mrad (Si) at 10 mm Al shield thickness, with a total duration of 5 months after capture (4 months for lowering the apojove to Io and one month for the flybys). The respective number of flybys for Ganymede would be 10 with a total duration of about 9 months. An alternative mission would have the SC acquire a low circular orbit around Jupiter, below the radiation belts, and manoeuvre to get an optimal altitude, with no major radiation effects, in less than 5 months after capture. In a third mission, repeated thrusting at the apojove vicinity, once down at the Io
torus, would raise the perijove itself to the torus to acquire a low circular orbit around Io in about 4 months, for a total of 8 months after capture; this corresponds, however, to over 100 apojove passes with an accumulated
dose, of about 8.5 Mrad (Si), that poses a critical issue.