Orbital characteristics and launch vehicle requirements for a solar occultation experiment measuring atmospheric constituents, such as aerosols or ozone, during the Nimbus-G and Applications Explorer Missions are analyzed. The experiment to be flown is basically a sun photometer which measures the spectral attenuation of solar radiation by the earth's atmosphere during spacecraft sunrise and sunset, yielding two aerosol and/or ozone stratospheric profiles per orbit. The tangent latitudes and longitudes as well as frequency of these measurements are analyzed for various spacecraft orbits to define maximum geographical coverage capability. Results indicate that a 50 deg inclined orbit for Applications Explorer provides latitude coverage from approximately 70 deg north to 70 deg south every 2-1/2 weeks. A high-moon, sun-synchronous orbit with an inclination of 99 deg for Nimbus-G will provide for coverage of occultation measurements at high latitudes near the polar regions (i.e., 64 to 80 deg north and south). The solar pointing requirements of the experiment in terms of yaw and pitch angles are also defined.
AIAA PAPER 75-57
American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics, Aerospace Sciences Meeting; Jan 20, 1975 - Jan 22, 1975; Pasadena, CA