Volume 504, Number 2, September III 2009
|Page(s)||653 - 661|
|Published online||09 July 2009|
Orbit determination for next generation space clocks
LNE-SYRTE, Observatoire de Paris, CNRS, UPMC, 75014 Paris, France e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
2 Centre National d'Études Spatiales, France
Accepted: 26 April 2009
We study the requirements on orbit determination compatible with operation of next generation space clocks at their expected uncertainty. Using the ACES (Atomic Clock Ensemble in Space) mission as an example, we develop a relativistic model for time and frequency transfer to investigate the effects of orbit determination errors. For the orbit error models considered we show that the required uncertainty goal can be reached with relatively modest constraints on the orbit determination of the space clock, which are significantly less stringent than expected from “naive” estimates. Our results are generic to all space clocks and represent a significant step towards the generalized use of next generation space clocks in fundamental physics, geodesy, and time/frequency metrology.
Key words: relativity / reference systems / time / ephemerides / instrumentation: miscellaneous / space vehicles: instruments
© ESO, 2009
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