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Analytical methods in Celestial Mechanics: satellites' stability and galactic billiards

Irene De Blasi
Feb 2024
In this paper, two models of interest for Celestial Mechanics are presented and analysed, using both analytic and numerical techniques, from the point of view of the possible presence of regular and/or chaotic motion, as well as the stability of the considered orbits. The first model, presented in a Hamiltonian formalism, can be used to describe the motion of a satellite around the Earth, taking into account both the non-spherical shape of our planet and the third-body gravitational influence of Sun and Moon. Using semi-analytical techniques coming from Normal Form and Nekhoroshev theories it is possible to provide stability estimates for the orbital elements of its geocentric motion. The second dynamical system presented can be used as a simplified model to describe the motion of a particle in an elliptic galaxy having a central massive core, and is constructed as a refraction billiard where an inner dynamics, induced by a Keplerian potential, is coupled with an external one, where a harmonic oscillator-type potential is considered. The investigation of the dynamics is carried on by using tools of ODEs' theory and is focused on studying the trajectories' properties in terms of periodicity, stability and, possibly, chaoticity.
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