Earth–Moon low energy trajectory optimization in the real system

Summary of the paper

The paper titled “Earth–Moon low energy trajectory optimization in the real system” published in Advances in Space Research [1] discussed the problem of low-energy transfer trajectories for lunar mission. This problem is first investigated in the model of circular restricted three-body problem (CRTBP). Considering the fact that the fuel consumption of a transfer trajectory in CRTBP is closely related to its Jacobi integral, a method based on Jacobi integral is proposed and eight optimal trajectories are obtained. These optimal trajectories in simple dynamical model could provide some useful information such as the flight time and the braking velocity impulse, and varieties of low-energy transfers in the real dynamical system, defined by the JPL ephemeris DE405, are computed by solving the corresponding nonlinear programming problem. The results obtained in this paper could provide a reference catalogue of low-energy transfers and have potential applications in practical lunar missions.

[1] Lei H, Xu B, Sun Y. Earth–Moon low energy trajectory optimization in the real system[J]. Advances in Space Research, 2013, 51(5): 917-929.


Hanlun Lei is an associated researcher in the School of Astronomy and Space Science at Nanjing University in China. He completed his PhD degree in Astronomy department of Nanjing University (2015) under the guidance of professor Bo Xu. His research interests are in the area of dynamical system theory, orbital mechanics of deep space probe, and low-energy trajectory design for interplanetary or lunar missions.