Re: MIR inclination

Ron Lee (
Sat, 14 Feb 1998 12:56:45 -0700

>the last days I asked myself for the reason of the inclination
>of MIR and the ISS.
>Why did they choose 51.6 degrees. Why not 51 oder 60 or 50.3 ?
>Why exactly 51.6 ?
>Any explanation ?
>Bye Lutz
It is likely due to the location of the Mir launch site.  If it is
at 51.6 degrees, there is your answer.  They get the best performance
by launching due east.  Inclination on a due east launch equals your
launch latitude.

The ISS going to that inclination allows resupply by rockets from that
latitude.  If there were NO desire to have Russian participation, then
an inclination of 28.45 degrees (KSC launch) would have been picked.

Actually it probably was 28.45 degrees initially.  Other factorc include
earth observation for which a higher inclination is better.

Ron "Amateur Orbit Design Dude" Lee