Flight Dynamics

An Introduction to Astronautics
Dr Simon A. Prince, City University London Dr Jai Joshi Formerly ESTEC, European Space Agency, Holland Prof. John Lagraff, Syracuse University, NY, USA


An Introduction to Astronautics Recommended Texts
Fortescue, P., Stark, J., & Swinerd, G. “Spacecraft Systems Engineering” Wiley, 3rd Edition, 2004 Turner, Martin, J. L. “Rocket and Spacecraft Propulsion” Springer, 2nd Edition, 2006 Tribble, A. C. “The Space Environment” Princeton University Press, 1995.


An Introduction to Astronautics
Part A: The Space Environment


Part A: The Space Environment

An Introduction to Astronautics
Part A: The Space Environment
1) 2) 3) 4) 5) 6) 7) 8) 9) 10) The Earth’s Atmosphere The Earth’s Magnetic Field The Earth’s Gravitational Field The Sun and the Solar Wind The Magnetosphere The Plasma Environment and the Radiation Belts The Thermal Environment The Solar System Physical Hazards of the Near Earth Environment Human Factors of the Space Environment


Part A: The Space Environment

1. The Earths Atmosphere


Part A: The Space Environment

1. The Earths Atmosphere: Origin & Composition
Nitrogen (78% @ h=0)
• Produced by volcanic emission, and by denitrification of decaying organic substances. • Removed by various photochemical processes and by denitrification by microbes.

Oxygen (21% @ h=0)
• Produced mainly by plant photosynthesis. • Removed by oxidation processes – combustion, animal respiration.

Argon (~0.9% @ h=0)
• Inert gas – no significant atmospheric circulation process.

Carbon Dioxide (~0.1% @ h=0)
• Produced mainly by animal respiration, combustion and volcanic emission. • Removed by plant photosynthesis .

Water Vapour ( ~85km • Uppermost regions of atmosphere - very low density means continuum model no longer valid (large molecular mean free path). • Kinetic Temperature (measure of average molecular kinetic energy) very high ~1000 - 2000oC. • High intensity...