[amsat-bb] Gravity Gradient?

Robert Bruninga bruninga at usna.edu
Wed Aug 24 22:11:53 UTC 2016

My understanding of Gravity Gradient is that a small spacecraft with a long
boom and tip mass will align in an UP/Down attitude.  But it is bi-stable
so either end can be  up and be stable.

What about a small satellite with TWO booms (dipole wires) in opposite
directions with small tip masses, it will be just as stable as before but I
may even get by with half the mass on each end.  More or less.  When I mean
“stable” I mean roughly up down, anything within +/- 40 degrees is still a
vertical HF antenna….  Besides faraday rotation will rotate the received
pattern every whichaway anyway.

I disagree with an opinion I have received that says “gravity gradient”
wont work with dual opposite end tip masses.  Says one has to be bigger and
it cannot be in the middle.  I disagree.

Any professionals have an opinion?

Bob, Wb4aPR

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