Theses and Dissertations

Issuing Body

Mississippi State University


Olsen, D. Carrie

Committee Member

Olsen, D. Gregory

Committee Member

Xin, Ming

Date of Degree


Document Type

Graduate Thesis - Open Access


Aerospace Engineering

Degree Name

Master of Science (M.S.)


James Worth Bagley College of Engineering


Department of Aerospace Engineering


Eccentric lunar frozen orbits are analyzed in this study in relation to lunar navigation and communications missions, particularly the proposed Magnolia-1 mission. An overview of the Earth/Moon system, frozen orbits, and the Magnolia-1 mission is provided. A review of existing literature is presented, and potential limitations are discussed. Both preliminary and numerical perturbation analyses are presented, and a general set of perturbations for further analysis of high-altitude lunar orbits is identified. Analysis of potential orbits for the Magnolia-1 mission is performed through calculation of a maximum deviation metric and through visualization as a function of initial orbital elements. Trends are identified within a closed search space by varying elements individually and in combination. Potential orbit designs for the Magnolia-1 mission are selected and compared to established alternatives. A method of orbit refinement is used to improve behavior, and coverage and eclipse analyses are performed to establish suitability. Conclusions are made involving general trends related to eccentric lunar frozen orbits and the specific designs proposed for the Magnolia-1 mission, and a method for the design of similar orbits is suggested. Ideas for further study are also presented.