A mission to test the Pioneer anomaly

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Title: A mission to test the Pioneer anomaly
Author: Anderson, John; Nieto, Michael; Turyshev, Slava
Abstract: Analysis of the radio tracking data from the Pioneer 10/11 spacecraft has consistently indicated the presence of an anomalous small Doppler frequency drift. The drift can be interpreted as being due to a constant acceleration of a_P= (8.74 1.33) x 10^{-8} cm/s^2 directed towards the Sun. Although it is suspected that there is a systematic origin to the effect, none has been found. The nature of this anomaly has become of growing interest in the fields of relativistic cosmology, astro- and gravitational physics as well as in the areas of spacecraft design and high-precision navigation. We present a concept for a designated deep-space mission to test the discovered anomaly. A number of critical requirements and design considerations for such a mission are outlined and addressed. (Refer to PDF files for exact formulas.)
Description: Also archived at: arXiv:gr-qc/0205059 v3 18 Oct 2002
Record URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1850/2109
Date: 2002-12

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