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com

ScienceDirect

Advances in Space Research 54 (2014) 2441–2445

www.elsevier.com/locate/asr

**A ﬂyby anomaly for Juno? Not from standard physics
**

L. Iorio ⇑

Ministero dell’Istruzione, dell’Universita` e della Ricerca (M.I.U.R.) – Istruzione, Viale Unita` di Italia 68, 70125 Bari, BA, Italy

Received 15 April 2014; received in revised form 23 May 2014; accepted 19 June 2014

Available online 3 July 2014

Abstract

An empirical formula recently appeared in the literature to explain the observed anomalies of about Dq_ 1 10 mm s1 in the geocentric range-rates q_ of the Galileo, NEAR and Rosetta spacecraft at some of their past perigee passages along unbound, hyperbolic

trajectories.It predicts an anomaly of the order of 6 mm s1 for the recent ﬂyby of Juno, occurred on 9 October 2013.Data analyses

to conﬁrm or disproof it are currently ongoing.We numerically calculate the impact on the geocentric Juno’s range rate of some classical

and general relativistic dynamical eﬀects which are either unmodeled or mismodeled to a certain level in the software used to process the

data.They are: (a) the ﬁrst even zonal harmonic coeﬃcient J 2 of the multipolar expansion of the terrestrial gravitational potential causing

orbital perturbations both at the ða0 Þ Newtonian (J 2 ) and at the ða00 Þ ﬁrst post-Newtonian level (J 2 c2 ) (b) the post-Newtonian gravitoelectric (GE) Schwarschild-like component of the Earth’s gravitational ﬁeld (c) the post-Newtonian gravitomagnetic (GM) Lense–Thirring eﬀect.The magnitudes of their mismodeled and nominal range-rate signatures are:ða0 Þ Dq_ rJ 2 1 lm s1 ða00 ÞDq_ J 2 c2 0:015 lm s1

(b) Dq_ GE 25 lm s1 (c) Dq_ GM 0:05 lm s1. If a ﬂyby anomaly as large as a few mm s1 will be ﬁnally found also for Juno, it will not

be due to any of these standard gravitational eﬀects. It turns out that a Rindler-type radial extra-acceleration of the same magnitude as in

the Pioneer anomaly would impact the Juno’s range-rate at a Dq_ Rin 1:5 lm s1 level. Regardless of the quest for the ﬂyby anomaly, all

such eﬀects are undetectable.

Ó 2014 COSPAR. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Keywords: Experimental studies of gravity; Experimental tests of gravitational theories; Modiﬁed theories of gravity; Lunar, planetary, and deep-space

probes

1. Introduction

On 9 October 2013, the NASA’s spacecraft Juno1

(Matousek, 2007) made an Earth ﬂyby passing to within

561 km of our planet at 19 : 21 GMT to gain the required

gravitational energy to reach Jupiter, its ﬁnal target, in July

2016 Helled et al., 2011.

Such an event raised interest (Clark, 2013; Scuka, 2013;

Anderson et al., 2013; Busack, 2013) because of its potential capability to shed more light on one of the recently

⇑ Tel.: +39 329 2399167.

**E-mail address: lorenzo.iorio@libero.it.
**

See also http://missionjuno.swri.edu/ and http://www.nasa.gov/

mission_pages/juno/ on the Internet.

1

**http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.asr.2014.06.035
**

0273-1177/Ó 2014 COSPAR. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

**reported astrometric anomalies in the Solar System
**

(Anderson and Nieto, 2010): the so-called ﬂyby anomaly

(Anderson et al., 2007; La¨mmerzahl and Dittus, 2008;

Anderson et al., 2008, Nieto and Anderson, 2009;

Turysheva and Toth, 2009). It consists of a small, unexpected increase of the geocentric range-rate

Dq_ 1 10 mm s1

ð1Þ

**experienced by some spacecraft (Galileo, NEAR, Rosetta)
**

approaching the Earth along unbound, hyperbolic trajectories in occasion of some of their ﬂybys. At present, no satisfactory explanations exist for such a phenomenon in

terms of both conventional gravitational and non-gravitational physics; see, e.g., La¨mmerzahl et al. (2008),

Turysheva and Toth (2009) and references therein. In

2442

L. Iorio / Advances in Space Research 54 (2014) 2441–2445

**particular, in Rievers and La¨mmerzahl (2011) it was shown
**

that the thermal eﬀects which should be responsible for

most of the Pioneer anomaly (Turysheva and Toth, 2010)

could not explain the Rosetta ﬂyby anomaly. Possible

spacecraft electrostatic charging eﬀects in terms of a

Lorentz force were ruled out in Atchison and Peck

(2010). For the-negligible-impact of the general relativistic

gravitomagnetic Lense–Thirring eﬀect on the motion of a

test particle in hyperbolic motion, see Iorio (2009),

Hackmann and Laemmerzahl (2010). Another negative

result in term of the Kerr geometry in the context of Conformal Gravity was recently obtained in Varieschi (2014).

Several more or less sound explanations in terms of nonconventional physics have been put forth so far (Busack,

2007; Nyambuya, 2008; Cahill, 2008; Svozil, 2008; Petry,

2008; Gerrard and Sumner, 2008; Mbelek, 2008; Lewis,

2009; Murad, 2009; Fontana, 2009; Hafele, 2009; Petry,

2009; Busack, 2010; Castro, 2010; Martinis and Perkovic´,

2010; Lassiaille, 2011; Raju, 2011; Hafele, 2011; Petry,

2011; Raju, 2012; Tank, 2012; Pinheiro, 2014; Acedo,

2014) with mixed success. We mention also a proposed

modiﬁcation of inertia (McCulloch, 2008; McCulloch,

2008), and the eﬀect of Earth-bound Dark Matter (Adler,

2009; Adler, 2009; Adler, 2010; Adler, 2013). Proposals

have been made to test the ﬂyby anomaly with dedicated

future space-based missions (Bertolami et al., 2011;

Bertolami et al., 2012; Pa´ramos and Hechenblaikner,

2013).

The opportunity oﬀered by Juno is, in principle, interesting also because of the relatively low altitude of its ﬂyby of

Earth. The expected eﬀect is of the order of Anderson et al.

(2013)2

Dq_ Juno 7 mm s1

ð2Þ

**The ﬁgure in Eq. (2) can be obtained, e.g., by using the
**

empirical formula devised in Anderson et al. (2008) to

accommodate some of the previously observed ﬂybys of

the other spacecraft. However, it should be recalled that

the formula by Anderson et al. Anderson et al. (2008) gives

wrong (not null) anomaly predictions for the second and

third Rosetta ﬂybys. In waiting for the ﬁnal outcome of

the ongoing analysis by NASA/JPL of the data collected

by ESA aimed to establish if the ﬂyby anomaly exists also

for Juno or not, in this paper we will quantitatively look

at the eﬀects of some standard Newtonian/Einsteinian gravitational eﬀects on the geocentric range-rate of the Jupitertargeted spacecraft at the epoch of its terrestrial ﬂyby. Some

of them, like the Lense–Thirring eﬀect, recently detected in

the Earth’s gravitational ﬁeld with a claimed 19% accuracy

(Everitt et al., 2011), are unmodeled in the softwares used to

process the spacecraft’s data, while others are modeled with

a necessarily limited accuracy. Our aim is to calculate the

size of such range-rate signals to see if they are relevant at

2

It may interesting to note that an anomaly with the same magnitude

but with the opposite sign was predicted in Busack (2013).

**a rq_ mm s1 level of accuracy and, in particular, if they
**

could allow for an eﬀect as large as Eq. (2).

2. Numerical simulations

In order to investigate the impact of some gravitational

eﬀects which, in principle, may induce a ﬂyby anomaly for

Juno, we numerically integrate its equations of motion in

a geocentric reference frame with Cartesian orthogonal

coordinates. For each additional acceleration Apert with

respect to the Newtonian monopole AN , viewed as a small

perturbation of it, we perform two numerical integrations:

one in which the total acceleration is Atot ¼ AN þ Apert ,

and one in which we keep only AN . Both the integrations

share the same initial conditions, retrieved from the HORIZONS WEB interface by NASA/JPL. Then, from the

resulting time series fxpert ðtÞ; y pert ðtÞ; zpert ðtÞg and fxN ðtÞ;

y N ðtÞ; zN ðtÞg for the geocentric coordinates we produce

two time series q_ pert ðtÞ and qN ðtÞ for the range-rate q and

take, their diﬀerence to obtain Dq_ which singles out the

expected signature of the eﬀect one is interested in on

the Juno’s range rate. The integration time span is

Dt ¼ 4000 s, starting from the shadow entry, so that the

ﬂyby occurs after 1260 s from t0 ¼ 0.

In Fig. 1 we depicts our results for the following dynamical features.

The Newtonian eﬀect of the Earth’s oblateness,pparamﬃﬃﬃ

eterized by the ﬁrst even zonal harmonic J 2 ¼ 5 C 2;0 ,

where C ‘;m are the normalized Stokes coeﬃcients of

degree ‘ and order m of the geopotential (Heiskanen

and Moritz, 1967). In the left upper corner, its nominal

range-rate shift is depicted. It shows a peak-to-peak

amplitude of a few m s1. Actually, global Earth’s gravity ﬁeld models are usually adopted in the data reduction softwares, so that one has to look just at the

residual range-rate signature left by the unavoidable

mismodeling in J 2 as a potential cause for a ﬂyby anomaly. By conservatively evaluating rC2;0 as in Iorio (2012)

on the basis of the independent approach recently put

forth in Wagner and McAdoo (2012), we obtained the

signal displayed in the right upper corner of Fig. 1. Its

amplitude is as little as 1 lm s1.

The ﬁrst post-Newtonian (1PN) gravitoelectric (GE),

Schwarzschild-like component of the Earth’s ﬁeld, usually modeled in the data analysis softwares. The left

mid panel shows its nominal range-rate signature, which

amounts to 25 lm s1.

The ﬁrst post-Newtonian (1PN) gravitomagnetic (GM),

Lense–Thirring component of the Earth’s ﬁeld, usually

unmodeled in the data analysis softwares. The peakto-peak amplitude of its signal, shown in the right mid

panel of Fig. 1, is as little as 0:05 lm s1.

The ﬁrst post-Newtonian (1PN) aspherical component

of the Earth’s ﬁeld, proportional to J 2 c2 (Soﬀel et al.,

1988; Heimberger et al., 1990; Brumberg, 1991), usually

unmodeled in the data analysis softwares. Its eﬀect on

L. Iorio / Advances in Space Research 54 (2014) 2441–2445

2443

Fig. 1. Simulated geocentric range-rate signatures of Juno at the Earth’s ﬂyby induced by various standard and non-standard dynamical eﬀects. The units

are m s1 for the nominal J 2 signal in the upper left corner, while lm s1 are used for all the other eﬀects. For the signal induced by the mismodeling in the

ﬁrst even zonal harmonic of the geopotential, displayed in the upper right corner, the conservative value rC2;0 ¼ 1:09 1010 (Iorio, 2012), calculated with

the approach in Wagner and McAdoo (2012), is adopted. The Rindler-type curve, placed in the lower right corner, is obtained with the value

ARin ¼ 8:7 1010 m s2.

**the Juno’s range-rate, displayed in the left lower corner
**

of Fig. 1, amounts to 0:015 lm s1.

A Rindler-type radial acceleration (Grumiller, 2010;

Carloni et al., 2011; Grumiller and Preis, 2011) with

the same magnitude as in the Pioneer anomaly (right

lower corner). As elucidated in Carloni et al. (2011),

Grumiller and Preis, 2011, it may not be applicable to

huge bodies of astronomical size, contrary to man-made

objects such as spacecraft like, e.g., the Pioneer probes.

Indeed for a body of mass mb and size d b , the condition

(Carloni et al., 2011; Grumiller and Preis, 2011)

Gmb

K jARin jr

db

ð3Þ

**must be satisﬁed. Since3 (Matousek, 2007) mJ ¼ 3625 kg,
**

d J 9 m, and r ¼ 6894 km at the ﬂyby, Eq. (3) is fully

3

We take the largest dimension of the solar arrays for d J .

8

satisﬁed for Juno. Indeed, GmJ d 1

m2 s2,

J ¼ 2:7 10

3

2 2

while jARin jrJ ¼ 6 10 m s . The magnitude of the

putative Rindler-type eﬀect on the Juno’s range-rate turns

out to be 1:5 lm s1.

**It can be noticed that none of the eﬀects considered is able
**

to impact the Juno’s range-rate at a mm s1 level. Moreover, the smallness of the 1PN signatures which will likely

not be modeled in the data analysis (GM + J 2 c2 ) should

make them practically undetectable. The same holds also

for a Rindler-type acceleration ARin large enough to explain

the Pioneer anomaly. On the one hand, it could not be

independently tested with the Moon’s motion. Indeed,

6

2 2

1

GmM d 1

m2 s2,

M ¼ 2:8 10 m s ; jARin jrM ¼ 3:3 10

so that the condition of Eq. (3) would not be satisﬁed for

the Moon. On the other hand, ARin could, in principle, certainly aﬀect all the artiﬁcial satellites orbiting the Earth

along bound trajectories. For, e.g., LARES, it is

2444

L. Iorio / Advances in Space Research 54 (2014) 2441–2445

**(Paolozzi et al., 2011; Paolozzi and Ciufolini, 2013)
**

mLR ¼ 386:8 kg, d LR ¼ 36:4 cm, and rLR ¼ 7828 km; thus

8

GmLR d 1

m2 s2 ; jARin jrLR ¼ 6:8 103 m2 s2,

LR ¼ 7 10

and the condition of Eq. (3) is fully satisﬁed. From

Renzetti (2013), it turns out that the perigee precession of

LARES is constrained down to rx_ LR ¼ 522 milliarcseconds

per year (mas yr1) level because of unmodeled empirical

accelerations in the along-track direction. This rules out

the possible existence of an anomalous Rindler-type acceleration for the Earth as large as ARin ¼ 8:7 1010 m s2

since it would induce an anomalous perigee precession4for

LARES as large as x_ Rin ¼ 800 mas yr1. From the point of

view of the Juno’s ﬂyby anomaly, an even smaller magnitude of a putative ARin , compatible with the LARES

bound, would be even more insigniﬁcant.

3. Conclusions

After its ﬂyby of Earth occurred on 9 October 2013,

analyses of the data collected by ESA have been started

by NASA/JPL to determine if also Juno, now en route to

Jupiter, will exhibit the so-called ﬂyby anomaly which

was detected in some of the past ﬂybys of the Galileo,

NEAR, and Rosetta spacecraft. An empirical formula proposed to explain the anomalies of such probes predicts an

eﬀect as large as about 6 mm s1 for the Juno’s range-rate.

We looked at some dynamical eﬀects which, in principle,

may be considered as viable candidates by numerically calculating their eﬀects on the range-rate of Juno at its ﬂyby of

Earth. The Earth’s quadrupole mass moment J 2 , usually

modeled in the data reduction softwares, nominally shifts

the Juno’s range-rate by a few m s1 at the Newtonian

level; by conservatively assuming an uncertainty in it of

the order of 1010 from the latest global gravity ﬁeld

models, the resulting residual signal reduces down to about

1 lm s1. The general relativistic Schwarzschild-type component of the Earth’s gravitational ﬁeld, which is modeled

in the data analyses, causes a nominal range-rate shift of

the order of 25 lm s1. The impact of the unmodeled general relativistic Lense-Thirring and J 2 c2 eﬀects on the

Juno’s range-rate is at the 0:05 0:01 lm s1 level. A putative Rindler-type radial uniform acceleration of the same

magnitude as in the Pioneer anomaly would perturb the

Juno’s range-rate by 1 lm s1.

If a mm s1 ﬂyby anomaly will ﬁnally result also for

Juno, it will not be caused by any of the dynamical eﬀects

considered in this work. In particular, the unmodeled relativistic signatures will be too small to be detectable, regardless of any further consideration on the ﬂyby anomaly as a

sign of new physics.

4

The pericenter precession caused by a radial uniform extra-acceleration A is Iorio

and ﬃ Giudice (2006), Sanders (2006), Sereno and Jetzer

pﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃ

1

(2006) x_ ¼ A 1 e2 n1

b a , where nb ; a; e are the satellite’s mean motion,

semimajor axis, and eccentricity, respectively.

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