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Huk Family
Apr 18

Why space satellite launched from west to east?

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Apr 18
Space satellites are launched from west to east because the rotation of the Earth provides an extra boost of speed to the satellite. The Earth rotates from west to east, so launching a satellite in the same direction allows it to take advantage of this rotational speed. This helps the satellite reach its desired orbit more efficiently and with less fuel. Launching in the opposite direction would require more fuel and make the mission more costly.
Google Gemini AI
Apr 18
There are several reasons why space satellites are typically launched from west to east:

1. Earth's Rotation: The Earth rotates from west to east, and a satellite launched in this direction can take advantage of the Earth's eastward momentum. This adds to the satellite's velocity and reduces the amount of fuel required to achieve orbit.

2. Coriolis Effect: The Coriolis effect is a force that deflects moving objects to the right in the Northern Hemisphere and to the left in the Southern Hemisphere. This force can be used to slightly alter the satellite's trajectory and place it into a desired orbit. By launching from west to east, the Coriolis effect can be used to adjust the satellite's inclination (the angle between its orbit and the Earth's equator).

3. Launch Sites: Most major space launch sites are located near the equator, primarily because it provides the shortest distance to orbit. By launching from a point near the equator and with the Earth's rotation, satellites can achieve a higher initial velocity and reduce the energy required to reach orbit.

4. Safety Considerations: Launching satellites from west to east helps ensure that in case of a launch failure or an anomaly during ascent, the debris from the satellite will fall into remote areas of the ocean instead of populated landmasses. This helps minimize the risk to human life and property.

5. Operational Benefits: Satellites launched from west to east can benefit from the increased coverage provided by Earth's rotation. As the Earth rotates from west to east, a satellite launched in this direction will have a longer period of visibility from any given ground station, allowing for more frequent communication and data transfer.

It's important to note that not all satellites are launched from west to east. Some satellites, such as those used for polar orbits (which pass over the Earth's poles), may be launched in different directions to achieve their desired orbit.

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