The solar photon sail (SPS) allows space missions without propellant that would otherwise not be feasible. Thrust models frequently used in the literature for the calculation of trajectories often underestimate the effect that the surface roughness has on SPS dynamics. A small variation of the thrust vector can induce a large modification of sail flight. In this work, the variation of the photon momentum vector (PMV) is computed as resulting from the incident Sun radiation, taking into account the absorbed and reflected photons. The momentum resulting from diffuse light has been modeled by using vectorial scattering theories in the limit of a quasi-smooth sail where the first-order of Rayleigh–Rice can be applied. In particular, the momentum change resulting from diffuse radiation causes a PMV reduction as well as a deviation of its direction from what is foreseen in the case of an ideally smooth sail. © 2018 Optical Society of America.

Photon momentum change of quasi-smooth solar sails

Scaglione, S.;Zola, D.
2018

Abstract

The solar photon sail (SPS) allows space missions without propellant that would otherwise not be feasible. Thrust models frequently used in the literature for the calculation of trajectories often underestimate the effect that the surface roughness has on SPS dynamics. A small variation of the thrust vector can induce a large modification of sail flight. In this work, the variation of the photon momentum vector (PMV) is computed as resulting from the incident Sun radiation, taking into account the absorbed and reflected photons. The momentum resulting from diffuse light has been modeled by using vectorial scattering theories in the limit of a quasi-smooth sail where the first-order of Rayleigh–Rice can be applied. In particular, the momentum change resulting from diffuse radiation causes a PMV reduction as well as a deviation of its direction from what is foreseen in the case of an ideally smooth sail. © 2018 Optical Society of America.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/20.500.12079/4713
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