Orbit Transfer by Means of a Ward Spiral

  • F. P. J. Rimrott
  • W. L. Cleghorn


The Ward spiral occurs as a result of the study of the effects of drag on the orbit of a satellite. The Ward spiral is also suitable as a climb path when transferring from a lower to a higher orbit, if both orbits are circular. A Ward transfer to a larger orbit is described in detail and compared to the well-known Hohmann transfer, and it is shown that a Ward transfer can have the advantage of a shorter transfer time.


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