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Questions tagged [orbit]

Questions regarding an object 'falling around' another object, due to a combination of gravity and momentum.

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Why hasn't the Earth fallen into the sun yet?

So the Earth's been orbiting the sun in a relatively stable orbit for billions of years now. during that time, it's been plowing through dust, and hit by comets and asteroids, presumably mostly from ...
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Could the Sun have liquid iron in orbit?

How close of an orbit to the Sun could an iron meteor get before it melts into a ball?
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Did the Moon ever approximate a geosynchronous orbit above the early Earth?

Simulations suggest the early Moon formed about 20,000 to 30,000 km away from Earth which is less than the current geosynchronous orbit of 42,164 km. The Moon is now 384,000 km away from Earth. Does ...
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Are circumbinary and noncircumbinary habitable zones mutually exclusive?

Could a binary star system have an earth-like planet orbiting star A, a second earth-like planet orbiting star B, AND a third earth-like planet in a stable circumbinary orbit? Or does the space that ...
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Is there an optimum orbit for a hipparcos/GAIA-like parallax observatory

The GAIA spacecraft is currently mapping the stars in the Milky Way by parallax. It orbits in the Earth-Sun L2 lagrange point. The parallax observed from the spacecraft orbiting around the sun allows ...
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'Geocentric' view of orbits

Given our real solar system how would planet orbits plot look like if we fix earth in the middle (put earth in the middle and draw a real orbit of a given planet) ? What would be the shape of its ...
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Earth orbit around the Sun and its position in the Galaxy

Given the orbit of the Earth around the Sun and the position of the Sun in the Galaxy, in which season are we (the Earth) closer to the galactic center?
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What orbit is the smallest or takes the least time to complete?

What orbit in our solar system would take the least time to perform 1 orbit? What is the fastest possible orbit to complete in the universe?
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What is the closest an asteroid or comet has passed the Sun and survived?

After SOHO began watching the Sun from space with its coronagraphs 24/7 it was discovered that there are comets passing very close to the Sun quite regularly, and while some are destroyed, some are ...
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How far does the Earth travel around the Sun during each month of the year?

After reading about the Earth's orbit and how it moves faster in January than it does in July (based on its distance from the Sun), I started to wonder... How far does the Earth travel around the Sun ...
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Why is the moon drifting? Shouldn't orbital decay bring it closer? [duplicate]

I noted that the moon drifts away from Earth a few centimeters each year. However, I'm thinking that the emission of gravitational waves would deter such thing and cause the exact opposite. ...
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Various moon orbits

Orbits can follow certain patterns, as I am aware. Some include a circular orbit around the bulk of the planet, a polar orbit spinning about the pole... What I'd like to know, for a planet with two ...
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1answer
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Does the Sun twinkle?

Does our solar system have enough bodies in orbit to appear to twinkle to another distant solar system viewed from the side? https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_asteroid-discovering_observatories ...
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Can the moon's gravity influence be observed on the space station's orbit?

In browsing through Astronomy Stack Exchange, I came across this question about orbiting the moon (Is it possible to achieve a stable "lunarstationary" orbit around the moon?). In further ...
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Could there be additional Neptunian satellites between Larissa and Hippocamp?

Plotting the moons of Neptune in terms of semimajor axis and eccentricity using the values given on the Wikipedia page for the moons of Neptune, there appears to be a fairly large gap between the ...
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How come the Sun does not make the Moon crash on the Earth?

As the Moon loops around the Earth, on one side of the Earth it moves toward the Sun (let's call it downward side) and on the other side it moves away from the Sun (let's call it the upward side). ...
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Is there any known moon of a moon? [duplicate]

As far as I understand, a moon is an object in permanent orbit around a planet, dwarf-planet, asteroid, etc. If there was another object permanently orbiting this moon, would that be a moon-moon? Is ...
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Can a photon have a stable orbit around a black hole?

Can a black hole free from an accretion disk collect photons in the photon sphere in a prolonged stable orbit? Could enough photons be in orbit to shade the actual black hole with light? Would a ...
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How was Cruithne's orbital time calculated?

How was it determined that Cruithne takes 770 years to complete its cycle with Earth? Janus and Epimetheus were disovered long enough ago, and have short enough cycle times, that we've had time to ...
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nonagesimal in Kepler's parallax computation

I'm starting to learn Kepler's Astronomia Nova using William Donahue's translation . In the translator's introduction, it is demonstrated how Kepler did his parallax computation. I failed to ...
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1answer
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How close to circular is the Earth's equator

Earth's orbit is about 99% circular. How circular is Earth around the equator? I know it bulges around the equator and is a spheroid. I also know it is not smooth and has oceans and mountains and all ...
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What variables are needed to calculate simple horseshoe orbit times?

EDIT This was NOT a duplicate of Horseshoe orbit cycle times. But that other question has been deleted, regardless. My original question asked for the answer to the equation(s), and provides many of ...
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Is it possible to see a spacecraft orbiting the moon with a pair of binoculars?

On this clear early morning over London, I was studying the moon with a pair of binoculars and noticed a tiny dot of light that appeared to trace a slow orbit around the moon. I reckon it moved ...
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does the orientation of orbital plane of our solar system rotate with the galaxy

As I understand it, our solar system travels through the milky way with the orbital plane tilted about 60 degrees so that we are sort of traveling in the direction of earth's north. My question is if ...
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Could a moon orbit an Earth size planet in such a way as to create a solar eclipse lasting for several weeks from start to finish?

Is it theoretically possible for a moon to orbit a planet (let us say Earth size, mass and solar distance) in such a way as to create a planet-wide solar eclipse lasting several weeks? These are my ...
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Do we know if there are asteroids leading or following Earth in Earth's orbit around the Sun?

A search of the Internet is so clouded with discussions about the asteroid belt or asteroids orbiting the planet Earth that I couldn't see an answer to my question. Do we know if there are asteroids ...
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Do Mercury and Venus exhibit retrograde motion?

This is more a terminology question, since Mercury and Venus certainly "move backwards" in the sky. The question is whether we call this retrograde motion. I'm referring to apparent retrograde motion ...
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Earth Orbit Simulator [closed]

I'm trying to simulate Earth's orbit using 2nd Newton's Law and cartesian coordinates. The program seems ok, but when plotting graph, it's a parabola. I know the shape of orbit changes according ...
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When is Earth closest to the Sun?

When is Earth closest to the Sun? Well, you say, perihelion of course. But perihelion is when the Earth-Moon barycentre is closest to the Sun. Not Earth itself. The barycentre is on average 4,671 ...
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Possibility of certain conditions on a planet [closed]

I want to know if there can be any planet that can fulfill the following conditions and if any planet has been observed with such characteristics: The planet must not be tidally locked. The day-night ...
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Tidally locked, and yet spinning?

Reading about Uranus almost 90° tilt, I was wondering if some rocky planet with mass concentration at one pole could possibly spin around its own axis, while still being locked to its star? Which ...
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3answers
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How fast would an object at cruising altitude(around 10,600 m) need to travel to stay on the opposite side of the Earth to the Moon?

I am trying to figure out how fast an object will have to travel (at a height around 10,600 m) to never be in the presence of the moon. Meaning the object will always be on the opposite side of the ...
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Why is Uranus able to support a regular satellite system?

Uranus has an obliquity of 98° which means that the mutual inclination between a satellite orbiting in its equatorial plane and the orbit of Uranus around the Sun would exceed the critical angle for ...
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Computing the local orbital frame vector directions in a geocentric reference frame

In the context of the study of a cubesat (little satellite), I am asked to define the local orbital frame and compute the local orbital frame vector directions as a function of time : Here the ...
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How uniformly is cometary debris distributed along the entire orbit of the comet?

Meteor showers occur when Earth passes through debris shed by a comet (if I get that right). Does this mean that the entire orbit of the comet is strewn with debris? I suppose that the debris follows ...
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How much does being at the perihelion heat Earth up?

The author in this article: https://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2010/07/100707-aphelion-heat-wave-earth-sun-science-weather-nation/ has explained that positional differences on the orbit is a ...
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Is Earth's true anomaly roughly 1 degree currently?

I wrote software which uses GMT real time to calculate Earth's mean, eccentric, and true anomaly. I encountered a bug where after reaching 360 degrees, instead of flipping back to zero, it subtracts ...
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How to convert a function of keplerian elements to a function of equinoctial elements?

I need to convert the Keplerian orbital elements to the equinoctial elements and then use the converted elements"equinoctial" in the function "d" below. To do this, first, I converted the Keplerian ...
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Is a precession rate of -0.67 radians/orbit plausible?

I came across the paper Rodin & Starovoit (2018) about the possible existence of a planet around the pulsar PSR B0525+21, which suggests the existence of a 0.387 Earth mass planet with the ...
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Expansion of Jupiter's perturbing effects on Kepler's third law treatment of orbits?

Does anyone know any good reference for how this was done? I remember reading once about how Jupiter's gravitation can be treated as a perturbation, but I cannot find it again now. I think they ...
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Why do satellites arcs end abruptly when observed from Earth

I recently got an app that let me track the ISS. I noticed that during the time it's visible, it disappears before reaching the horizon, and sometimes reappears soon after for a bit. Can somebody ...
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1answer
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Extract anomalies from two-line element set (TLE) on ISS (International Space Station)

I am faced to a problem of interpretation illustrated on figure below : From wikipedia : Two-line element definition, I can extract the following meaning anomaly : 308.7017 ° (in degrees) But in ...
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Warm jupiter vs hot jupiter, fluffyness

If Jupiter was orbiting at 1AU, replacing Earth, but everything else in the solar system remained as it is currently, how much would the increased heat from the sun increase Jupiter's radius? In ...
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Is there a name for this type of orbit of a natural satellite?

Is there a name for the orbit of a natural satellite of a planet who's period is the same as the rotational period of the planet, but the orbital motion has the opposite sense than the planet's ...
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Why is Neptune true anomaly decreasing?

So I've been having fun with trying to determine where the perihelia of different planets are (using JPL Horizons). And by the time I got to Saturn, something weird started happening. I've noticed ...
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How can we learn the inclination of the orbiting plane of the exoplanets using radial speed method?

I heard about the radial speed method to discover exoplanets a few years ago, however, these questions kept confusing me. If we know a planet star of mess $m$ is orbiting a star by interpreting the ...
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Precise declination of Moon

The moon follows 5.14 deg inclined path. the ecliptic and the Moon's path coincide are called 'nodes', and they travel around the ecliptic in a period of 18.66 years. Once every 18.66 years, the ...
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How could the Moon have arisen from a collision - what would make for an elliptical orbit?

One serious theory advanced for the creation of Earth's moon is that it resulted from a collision. However matter would be thrown off in all directions and some will fall back. How could a mass of ...
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What is the minimum size to be a natural satellite?

Would a smaller satellite be more stable around a smaller planet where the same satellite would not be stable or last around a larger planet? I added the picture to show how moon size planets can ...
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How long will a ball of ice stay in orbit around Earth? [closed]

How big would a ball of frozen water need to be to last one orbit? How would atmospheric drag effect the ball of water? https://space.stackexchange.com/questions/32188/what-is-the-darkest-orbit-...