Letter | Published:

Estimating the Life of a Satellite

Naturevolume 180pages14671468 (1957) | Download Citation



IT is perhaps not generally known that one can forecast rather simply how long one of the new satellites will continue in an orbit, provided only that one has good information about the period and some knowledge of the eccentricity. In particular, it is not necessary to know the density of the air or the scale-height. It is sufficient to assume that the resistance decreases exponentially with height near the perigee.

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  1. Cavendish Laboratory, Cambridge

    • J. M. C. SCOTT


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