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A special slide rule for solving geometric problems related to synchronous satellites is included in this Memorandum, which supplements the information printed on the slide rule and documents the mathematical background. Among the problems of interest are those of the earth area coverage from synchronous satellites in circular, near equatorial orbits; the earth station antenna direction (elevation and azimuth) for receiving satellite communications; and the accuracy with which a synchronous satellite with multiple beams of fixed relative orientation can track earth points by attitude variations. R-454-NASA showed that angular deviations are not a problem at an inclination of 7 deg 20 min to the equatorial plane. Most communication satellites need not be designed for greater inclinations, and unless beamwidths narrower than a few degrees are considered, angular deviation can be ignored.

This report is part of the RAND Corporation Research memorandum series. The Research Memorandum was a product of the RAND Corporation from 1948 to 1973 that represented working papers meant to report current results of RAND research to appropriate audiences.

The RAND Corporation is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.