AIR DENSITY AT HEIGHTS OF 140-180 km, FROM ANALYSIS OF THE ORBIT OF 1968-59A.
ROYAL AIRCRAFT ESTABLISHMENT FARNBOROUGH (ENGLAND)
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The satellite 1968-59A was launched on 11 July 1968 into a polar orbit with an initial perigee height of 160 km and apogee height 1800 km. The satellite did not decay until 6 November 1968, and analysis of its orbit yields values of air density at average intervals of 2 days between July and early November, mainly at heights of 140-180 km. Separate profiles of air density versus height are obtained for July-August and for September-October 1968, with the latter giving values of density about 10 higher. This increase in density reveals the existence of the semi-annual variation in density, well known at greater heights the maximum density in October 1968 was about 20 higher than the minimum in July, for heights near 170 km. Author
- Atmospheric Physics
- Unmanned Spacecraft