Purdue University Graduate School
MS_Thesis_Colton_D_Mitchell.pdf (17.76 MB)

Dynamical Flow Characteristics in Response to a Maneuver in the L1 or L2 Earth-Moon Region

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posted on 2023-04-25, 02:49 authored by Colton D MitchellColton D Mitchell

National security concerns regarding cislunar space have become more prominent due to

the anticipated increase in cislunar activity. Predictability is one of these concerns. Cislunar

motion is difficult to predict because it is chaotic. The chaotic nature of cislunar motion is

pronounced near the L1 and L2 Lagrange points. For this reason, among others, it is likely

that a red actor (an antagonist) would have its cislunar spacecraft perform a maneuver in

one of the aforementioned vicinities to reach some cislunar point of interest. This realization

unveils the need to ascertain some degree of predictability in the motion resulting from a

maneuver performed in the L1 or L2 region. To investigate said motion, impulsive maneuvers

are employed on the L1 and L2 Lagrange points and on L1 and L2 Lyapunov orbits in the

model that is the circular restricted three-body problem. The behavior of the resultant

trajectories is analyzed to understand how the magnitude and direction of a maneuver in

said regions affect the behavior of the resultant trajectory. It is found that the direction

of such maneuvers is particularly influential with respect to said behavior. Regarding both

the L1 and L2 regions, certain maneuver directions yield certain behaviors in the resultant

trajectory over a wide range of maneuver magnitudes. This understanding is informative to

cislunar mission design.


Degree Type

  • Master of Science


  • Aeronautics and Astronautics

Campus location

  • West Lafayette

Advisor/Supervisor/Committee Chair

Kathleen C. Howell

Additional Committee Member 2

Carolin Frueh

Additional Committee Member 3

Kenshiro Oguri