SCIENCE CHINA Information Sciences, Volume 61, Issue 4: 040305(2018) https://doi.org/10.1007/s11432-017-9202-1

Design of communication relay mission for supporting lunar-farside soft landing

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  • ReceivedJun 8, 2017
  • AcceptedJul 3, 2017
  • PublishedDec 12, 2017


Chang'E-IV will be the first soft-landing and rover mission on the lunar farside. The relay satellite, which is located near the Earth-Moon L2 point for relay communication, is the key to the landing mission. Based on an analysis of the characteristics of the task and the technical difficulties associated with the relay satellite system, the overall design scheme of the relay communication mission is proposed in terms of trajectory design and communication system design among other aspects. First, according to the complex dynamic environment, a mission orbit that serves as an uninterrupted communication link is presented. A short-duration and low-energy transfer trajectory with lunar flyby is discussed. Orbital correction and a low-cost control strategy for orbit maintenance in the Earth-Moon L2 point region are provided. Second, considering the existing technical constraints, the requirement of relay communication in different stages and the design schemes of frequency division and redundant relay communication system are introduced. Finally, based on the trajectory design index and the performance of the communication system, the overall design scheme of the relay communication mission is proposed. This mission will provide the technical support and reference required for the Chang'E-IV mission.


This work was supported by National Science and Technology Major Project of the Ministry of Science and Technology of China (Lunar Exploration Program), National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant No. 11572038), and Chang Jiang Scholars Program.

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