Istituto di Scienza e Tecnologie dell'Informazione     
Anselmo L. Orbital analysis of the Shenzhou-7 manned mission in support of the Malindi tracking station. Technical report, 2009.
This report presents an analysis of the orbital and ground coverage aspects of the third Chinese manned mission, Shenzhou-7, carried out in September 2008. The flight was supported by the Malindi tracking station, in Kenya, managed by the Italian Space Agency (ASI). Before and during the mission, the Space Flight Dynamics Laboratory of ISTI/CNR provided the ASI personnel in Malindi with trajectory and maneuver analysis, together with flight monitoring. Tracking passes and re-entry events predictions were independently derived and reconstructed with in-house research and simulations. In addition, also the most appropriate time windows for the first Chinese spacewalk, planned during this mission, were autonomously predicted and made available in advance to the ASI personnel in Malindi. The Malindi ground station played an important role in the Shenzhou-7 flight, as it was in the case of the previous two manned missions. Due to its critical geographical position, in fact, Malindi neatly integrated the existing network of ground stations and tracking ships, covering also the beginning of the first Chinese extravehicular activity and a critical portion of the spacecraft re-entry, between the retro-rocket firing and the impact with the atmospheric interface.
Subject Shenzhou-7 Space Mission
Malindi Station
Orbital Analysis
Ground Coverage
Chinese Manned Program
J.2 Physical Sciences and Engineering
70M20 Orbital mechanics

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