Accuracy of meteor positioning from space-and ground-based observationsOPEN ACCESS 

Hongru Chen, Nicolas Rambaux, Jérémie Vaubaillon

Astronomy & Astrophysics 642 L11 (2020), manuscript no. 39014


“Aims. The knowledge of the orbits and origins derived from meteors is important for the study of meteoroids and of the early solar system. With an increase in nano-satellite projects dedicated to Earth observations or directly to meteor observations (e.g., the Meteorix CubeSat), we investigate the stereoscopic measurement of meteor positions using a pair of cameras, one deployed in space and one on the ground, and aim to understand the accuracy and the main driving factors. This study will reveal the requirements for system setups and the geometry favorable for meteor triangulation. Methods. This Letter presents the principle of the stereoscopic measurement from space and the ground, and an error analysis. Specifically, the impacts of the resolutions of the cameras, the attitude and orbit determination accuracy of the satellite, and the geometry formed by the moving target and observers are investigated. Results. To reach a desirable positioning accuracy of 1 km it is necessary to equip the satellite with high-accuracy sensors (e.g., star tracker and GPS receiver) to perform fine attitude and orbit determination. The best accuracy can occur when the target is at an elevation of 30 deg. with respect to the ground station. “