orbital mechanics
Mechanics Me*chan"ics, n. [Cf. F. m['e]canique.] That science, or branch of applied mathematics, which treats of the action of forces on bodies. [1913 Webster]

Note: That part of mechanics which considers the action of forces in producing rest or equilibrium is called {statics}; that which relates to such action in producing motion is called {dynamics}. The term mechanics includes the action of forces on all bodies, whether solid, liquid, or gaseous. It is sometimes, however, and formerly was often, used distinctively of solid bodies only: The mechanics of liquid bodies is called also {hydrostatics}, or {hydrodynamics}, according as the laws of rest or of motion are considered. The mechanics of gaseous bodies is called also {pneumatics}. The mechanics of fluids in motion, with special reference to the methods of obtaining from them useful results, constitutes {hydraulics}. [1913 Webster]

{Animal mechanics} (Physiol.), that portion of physiology which has for its object the investigation of the laws of equilibrium and motion in the animal body. The most important mechanical principle is that of the lever, the bones forming the arms of the levers, the contractile muscles the power, the joints the fulcra or points of support, while the weight of the body or of the individual limbs constitutes the weight or resistance.

{Applied mechanics}, the principles of abstract mechanics applied to human art; also, the practical application of the laws of matter and motion to the construction of machines and structures of all kinds.

{orbital mechanics}, the principles governing the motion of bodies in orbit around other bodies under gravitational influence, such as artificial Earth satellites. [1913 Webster +PJC]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Orbital mechanics — A satellite orbiting the earth has a tangential velocity and an inward acceleration. Orbital mechanics or astrodynamics is the application of ballistics and celestial mechanics to the practical problems concerning the motion of rockets and other… …   Wikipedia

  • Orbital elements — are the parameters required to uniquely identify a specific orbit. In celestial mechanics these elements are generally considered in classical two body systems, where a Kepler orbit is used (derived from Newton s laws of motion and Newton s law… …   Wikipedia

  • Orbital inclination change — is an orbital maneuver aimed at changing the inclination of an orbiting body s orbit. This maneuver is also known as an orbital plane change as the plane of the orbit is tipped. This maneuver requires a change in the orbital velocity vector… …   Wikipedia

  • Orbital forcing — is the effect on climate of slow changes in the tilt of the Earth s axis and shape of the orbit (see Milankovitch cycles). These orbital changes change the total amount of sunlight reaching the Earth by up to 25% at mid latitudes (from 400 to 500 …   Wikipedia

  • Mechanics — Me*chan ics, n. [Cf. F. m[ e]canique.] That science, or branch of applied mathematics, which treats of the action of forces on bodies. [1913 Webster] Note: That part of mechanics which considers the action of forces in producing rest or… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Orbital eccentricity — This article is about eccentricity in astrodynamics. For other uses, see Eccentricity (disambiguation). An elliptic Kepler orbit with an eccentricity of 0.7 (red), a parabolic Kepler orbit (green) and a hyperbolic Kepler orbit with an… …   Wikipedia

  • Orbital period — For the music album, see Orbital Period (album). The orbital period is the time taken for a given object to make one complete orbit about another object. When mentioned without further qualification in astronomy this refers to the sidereal period …   Wikipedia

  • Orbital inclination — For the science fiction novella by William Shunn, see Inclination (novella). Fig. 1: One view of inclination i (green) and other orbital parameters Inclination in general is the angle between a reference plane and another plane or axis of… …   Wikipedia

  • Orbital state vectors — In astrodynamics or celestial dynamics orbital state vectors (sometimes state vectors) are vectors of position ( ) and velocity ( ) that together with their time (epoch) ( ) uniquely determine the state of an orbiting body. State vectors are… …   Wikipedia

  • Orbital speed — Not to be confused with Escape Velocity. The orbital speed of a body, generally a planet, a natural satellite, an artificial satellite, or a multiple star, is the speed at which it orbits around the barycenter of a system, usually around a more… …   Wikipedia

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