Results of tracking a spacecraft in the vicinity of the L2 libration point of the Sun–Earth system
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The launch of the Spektrum-Roentgen-Gamma (SRG) international orbiting astrophysical observatory is planned for the near future. It is planned tomaneuver SRGinto the vicinity of the L2 libration point of the Sun–Earth system, where it will be kept in a quasi-stable orbit. The spacecraft orbit must be maintained in order to carry out the scientific program of the project, which requires obtaining information about the current parameters of its motion. With the aim of developing methods for making optical measurements and estimating the required volume of measurement data and their accuracy, observations of the Gaia spacecraft, which is located in the vicinity of L2, were made at the Sayan Observatory in 2014–2015. The results of observations of the Gaia spacecraft on the 1.6-m infrared telescope of the Sayan Observatory are presented. The measured brightness of the spacecraft was 20.7–22m, which is close to the limiting magnitude of the telescope. The accuracy of these astrometric measurements was about one arcsecond. Possibilities for obtaining accurate astrometric data for the SRG spacecraft in orbit in the vicinity of L2 are discussed, as well as the required observing conditions and the volume of measurement data required for adequate prediction of the spacecraft motion.
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