I need help understanding a question from my physics book.

It goes like this:

a communications firm wants to place a satellite in orbit so that it is always directly above the earth’s 45th parallel (latitude 45 north). This means that the plane of the orbit will not pass through the center of the earth. Is such an orbit possible? Why or why not?

Can somebody help me answer this?

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Find out what acceleration (magnitude and direction) would be needed for this orbit. Compare to the gravity acceleration. Can it match? $\endgroup$ – Thomas Fritsch Jul 28 '19 at 13:11
  • 3
    $\begingroup$ Think about the force of gravity on the satellite, and the direction that the force applies to the satellite. $\endgroup$ – garyp Jul 28 '19 at 13:12

If we try to put a geosynchronous satellite above latitudes other than equator then it won't be there for long as there will be a component of gravitational force acting downwards which will give some velocity to the satellite in that direction and it will deviate from it's geosynchronous position.


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