Imperial College London


Faculty of Natural SciencesDepartment of Physics

Professor of Experimental Astrophysics



+44 (0)20 7594 7552t.sumner




1108Blackett LaboratorySouth Kensington Campus






BibTex format

author = {Christophe, B and Andersen, PH and Anderson, JD and Asmar, S and Berio, P and Bertolami, O and Bingham, R and Bondu, F and Bouyer, P and Bremer, S and Courty, J-M and Dittus, H and Foulon, B and Gil, P and Johann, U and Jordan, JF and Kent, B and Laemmerzahl, C and Levy, A and Metris, G and Olsen, O and Paramos, J and Prestage, JD and Progrebenko, SV and Rasel, E and Rathke, A and Reynaud, S and Rievers, B and Samain, E and Sumner, TJ and Theil, S and Touboul, P and Turyshev, S and Vrancken, P and Wolf, P and Yu, N},
doi = {10.1007/s10686-008-9084-y},
journal = {Experimental Astronomy},
pages = {529--547},
title = {Odyssey: a solar system mission},
url = {},
volume = {23},
year = {2009}

RIS format (EndNote, RefMan)

AB - The Solar System Odyssey mission uses modern-day high-precisionexperimental techniques to test the laws of fundamental physics which determine dynamics in the solar system. It could lead to major discoveries by using demonstrated technologies and could be flown within the Cosmic Vision time frame. The mission proposes to perform a set of precision gravitation experiments from the vicinity of Earth to the outer Solar System. Its scientific objectives can be summarized as follows: (1) test of the gravity force law in the Solar System up to and beyond the orbit of Saturn; (2) precise investigation of navigation anomalies at the fly-bys; (3) measurement of Eddington’sparameter at occultations; (4) mapping of gravity field in the outer solarsystem and study of the Kuiper belt. To this aim, the Odyssey mission is built up on a main spacecraft, designed to fly up to 13 AU, with the following components: (a) a high-precision accelerometer, with bias-rejection system, measuring the deviation of the trajectory from the geodesics, that is also giving gravitational forces; (b) Ka-band transponders, as for Cassini, for a precise range and Doppler measurement up to 13 AU, with additional VLBI equipment; (c) optional laser equipment, which would allow one to improve the range and Doppler measurement, resulting in particular in an improvedmeasurement (with respect to Cassini) of the Eddington’s parameter. In this baseline concept, the main spacecraft is designed to operate beyond the Saturn orbit, up to 13 AU. It experiences multiple planetary fly-bys at Earth, Mars or Venus, and Jupiter. The cruise and fly-by phases allow the mission to achieve its baseline scientific objectives [(1) to (3) in the above list]. In addition to this baseline concept, the Odyssey mission proposes the release of the Enigmaradio-beacon at Saturn, allowing one to extend the deep space gravity test up to at least 50 AU, while achieving the scientific objective of a mapping of gravity field in
AU - Christophe,B
AU - Andersen,PH
AU - Anderson,JD
AU - Asmar,S
AU - Berio,P
AU - Bertolami,O
AU - Bingham,R
AU - Bondu,F
AU - Bouyer,P
AU - Bremer,S
AU - Courty,J-M
AU - Dittus,H
AU - Foulon,B
AU - Gil,P
AU - Johann,U
AU - Jordan,JF
AU - Kent,B
AU - Laemmerzahl,C
AU - Levy,A
AU - Metris,G
AU - Olsen,O
AU - Paramos,J
AU - Prestage,JD
AU - Progrebenko,SV
AU - Rasel,E
AU - Rathke,A
AU - Reynaud,S
AU - Rievers,B
AU - Samain,E
AU - Sumner,TJ
AU - Theil,S
AU - Touboul,P
AU - Turyshev,S
AU - Vrancken,P
AU - Wolf,P
AU - Yu,N
DO - 10.1007/s10686-008-9084-y
EP - 547
PY - 2009///
SN - 1572-9508
SP - 529
TI - Odyssey: a solar system mission
T2 - Experimental Astronomy
UR -
UR -
UR -
VL - 23
ER -