Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xvii
  2. Frederico Francisco
    Pages 1-4
  3. Frederico Francisco
    Pages 43-56
  4. Frederico Francisco
    Pages 57-63
  5. Frederico Francisco
    Pages 65-80
  6. Frederico Francisco
    Pages 81-83
  7. Back Matter
    Pages 85-87

About this book


This thesis presents fundamental work that explains two mysteries concerning the trajectory of interplanetary spacecraft. For the first problem, the so-called Pioneer anomaly, a wholly new and innovative method was developed for computing all contributions to the acceleration due to onboard thermal sources. Through a careful analysis of all parts of the spacecraft Pioneer 10 and 11, the application of this methodology has yielded the observed anomalous acceleration. This marks a major achievement, given that this problem remained unsolved for more than a decade.
For the second anomaly, the flyby anomaly, a tiny glitch in the velocity of spacecraft that perform gravity assisting maneuvers on Earth, no definitive answer is put forward; however a quite promising strategy for examining the problem is provided and a new mission is proposed. The proposal largely consists in using the Galileo Navigational Satellite System to track approaching spacecraft, and in considering a small test body that approaches Earth from a highly elliptic trajectory.


Interplanetary spacecraft Mission proposals Parametric analysis Phong shading Pioneer and flyby anomolies Radiation pressure Spacecraft tracking Tests of gravity Thermal modelling Thermally induced acceleration

Authors and affiliations

  • Frederico Francisco
    • 1
  1. 1.Intituto Superior TécnicoUniversity of LisbonLisbonPortugal

Bibliographic information