The photonic laser propulsion (PLP) system can produce continuous and constant thrust. This paper reviews its basics and then studies its application in the two-body interplanetary trajectory. This study also derives the equations of motion (EOM) for a spacecraft in an inertial frame for the two-body problem, and variation of orbit elements. This study introduces the Gauss’ Equations to evaluate the evolution of orbit elements, and normalizes the Gauss’ Equations with parameters of mother ship. The evolution of orbit elements also confirms the constraint on the smallest thrust at the launching stage. Numerical simulations are provided in this paper. The results of this paper are directly applicable to future PLP thrust missions, and particularly interplanetary travel.
Advances in the Astronautical Sciences 148, AAS 13 – 377