I've seen discussion threads where amateur astronomers estimate a satellite's orbital parameters from angles-only telescope observation. Are there any community tools or algorithms to help with this math? It's not a trivial problem to solve.

  • $\begingroup$ My thinking is that you'd use curve fitting techniques to match the observations to a best fit ellipse. You should also be able to estimate the period directly, which will give you the distance which should help. $\endgroup$
    – user21
    Feb 6, 2016 at 15:57
  • $\begingroup$ Do you mean algorithms to estimate the position using its right ascension and declination? There are several methods available for that. $\endgroup$ Feb 6, 2016 at 17:23
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ I'd like to estimate all the orbital parameters -- apogee, perigee, inclination, etc. I know it's done, but I was hoping for some libraries / tools to help do the job so I'm not coding up journal articles. $\endgroup$
    – Carl F.
    Feb 6, 2016 at 18:27
  • $\begingroup$ It looks like narom.no/undervisningsressurser/sarepta/rocket-theory/… describes what you are after. $\endgroup$
    – B--rian
    Apr 21, 2021 at 8:43


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