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# Geostationary Orbit

## Question

What is the altitude for geostationary orbit? Im sure its been asked plenty of times but the search function isnt too helpful in this case. Thanks!

## 14 answers to this question

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I believe it is around 2800km

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Thank you sir!

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http://kspwiki.nexisonline.net/wiki/Kerbin

Kerbin's wiki page has the exact altitude, aswell as some other handy stuff.

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Wiki says 2868.4 km altitude, though I remember calculations that placed it a little higher.

Fairly easy way to measure it in the game (assuming you're playing the paid version)

Get into orbit. Any orbit that doesn't dump you in the atmosphere will do.

Check your apoapsis and periapsis times on the map screen. Burn until they're exactly three hours apart (Kerbin's sidereal rotation period is 6 hours).

The altitude for stationary orbit will be the average of your apoapsis and periapsis altitudes. (All orbits around a body with the same period have the same semi-major axis.)

An the speed you have when you cross that altitude will be the circular orbit speed for that altitude. (All orbits around a body with the same semi-major axis have the same specific orbital energy, and thus, the same speed for all orbital altitudes that they share.) .It just won't be in the proper direction to make it circular.

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I figure I'd piggy back this thread instead of starting a new one. I'm having trouble getting my satellites into geostationary orbit. I currently have 2 in geostationary that are slightly outside the 2868.4km/1008.9m/s reference for doing so. I have 1 sat at ap-2871km/pe-2868km @ 1008.5-1009.4m/s. My second sat is ap-2869km/pe-2868km @ 1008.9-1009.2m/s. Both of these are rock solid and stay exactly where they are supposed to be. I've been trying to get 4 other sats to be geostationary using the 2868.4km ap/pe reference numbers to no avail.

Are there any mods with more detailed ap/pe information(decimal places/larger number range)?

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Are there any mods with more detailed ap/pe information(decimal places/larger number range)?

Also FYI - In KSP it's called Keostationary.

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I'd rather we not start a "it's called this way", since everyone doesn't seem to agree^^; (I've seen Keo, Kerbo, maybe even more).

Anyway, to answer i0nicx, you don't need your ship to be in a perfect 2,868.4 km circular orbit, as long as your semi-major axis is the same. So you could for instance put your ship in a 2,867.4-2,869.4 orbit, and still be in a synchronous orbit, but not exactly stationary.

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I'd rather we not start a "it's called this way", since everyone doesn't seem to agree^^; (I've seen Keo, Kerbo, maybe even more).

Anyway, to answer i0nicx, you don't need your ship to be in a perfect 2,868.4 km circular orbit, as long as your semi-major axis is the same. So you could for instance put your ship in a 2,867.4-2,869.4 orbit, and still be in a synchronous orbit, but not exactly stationary.

I have no idea since my perfectly geostationary(kerbo/kerbi/kerb/keo-stationary) satellite isn't 2868.4/2868.4. I'll just keep messing around and read some more. Thank you =).

Also FYI - In KSP it's called Keostationary.

I use mechjeb, but it doesn't handle altitude to a decimal place(2868.4km for example just shows 2868Mm).

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I found MechJeb to be overkill, also all of the MechJeb parts weigh more than I'd like. I am a complete newb though and may be missing something. I found Kerbal Engineer to be much more straightfoward. A simple nearly weightless, dragless part you add to your craft and just menus of information (whereas MechJeb will literally fly your ship for you and you can just sit there and watch Sims style if you want). I may come to use MechJeb when my space program is a bit more developed.

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Thread is ancient. That said, the AR202 radial attachment part that has been with Mechjeb since the 0.15-era is nearly massless, at 0.00001 mass units.

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I'd rather we not start a "it's called this way", since everyone doesn't seem to agree^^; (I've seen Keo, Kerbo, maybe even more).

Anyway, to answer i0nicx, you don't need your ship to be in a perfect 2,868.4 km circular orbit, as long as your semi-major axis is the same. So you could for instance put your ship in a 2,867.4-2,869.4 orbit, and still be in a synchronous orbit, but not exactly stationary.

Actually, you do need to be in a perfectly circular orbit for the orbit to be geo/keo/kerbostationary. A stationary orbit is the specific case of a synchronous orbit where the object in orbit remains above a single (equatorial) point on the planet surface. A synchronous orbit is any orbit with a period equal to the planet's rotation, a synchronous orbit is the one that has fixed semi-major axis but the peri/apoapsis can vary within the bounds of that defined semi-major axis.

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Argh. No more posting on this thread; it is a zombie, lurching about trying to find some brains to devour. Please just let it rest in peace.

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Also FYI - In KSP it's called Keostationary.

I prefer 'kerbostationary'.

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I prefer Necrokerbal, and I'm truly sorry for resurrecting this thread. I was a good boy and used the search function, then forgot and posted to an old thread. Abort mission!