Re: MIR inclination

Neil Clifford (
Sat, 14 Feb 1998 21:21:39 +0000 (GMT)

Ron Lee scribbles in reply to Lutz:

|>>Why did they choose 51.6 degrees. Why not 51 oder 60 or 50.3 ?
|>>Why exactly 51.6 ?
|>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.

Baykonur/Tyuratam is actually approx 46 deg N. I suspect that 51.6 deg
inclination orbit is the optimum orbit arising from azimuthal launch
restrictions at the cosmodrome (eg it might not be a good idea to
overfly China during ascent ;-) - that would be my guess.

Perhaps Phil Clark/Chien know of the actual reason?

Neil Clifford                                       <>