Astrodynamics has a long history beginning from 17th century, when Isaac Newton introduced his theories. Astrodynamics studies motion and equilibrium of celestial bodies based on Newton’s law of universal gravitation and it is the basics of Astronomy.

It has been developed so early that one might think that there’s no chance of developing it any further. However, increase in PC performance and technical developments like ion propulsion and solar sailing create a new field in astrodynamics.

Main hot topics in astrodynamics are Low-thrust, Swing-by and Restricted three-body problem. Low-thrust propulsion systems, ion engine in HAYABUSA or solar sailing of IKAROS, has higher efficiency than traditional propulsion system. Swing-by is technique used to change the velocity and/or direction of spacecraft by using gravity of celestial body. Restricted three-body problem(R3BP) research un/stable point called Lagrange point or Halo orbit around Lagrange points.

The right figure shows the result of trajectory optimization in the HAYABUSA's case. HAYABUSA traveled from the Earth to Itokawa by using Low-thrust and Swing-by.

Mission design and System development are also our research topics. These topics require a wide range of knowledge including linear algebra, statistics, programming, astrodynamics, and satellite design. You could fill up the lack of knowledge in the practice while doing your research.

- Hongru Chen, Yasuhiro Kawakatsu and Toshiya Hanada, "Phasing Delta-V for transfers from Sun-Earth halo orbits to the Moon", Acta Astronautica, Vol. 127, pp.464-473, 2016.
- Bruno Victorino Sarli,Kaito Ariu,Hajime Yano.” PROCYON’s probability analysis of accidental impact on Mars”,Advances in Space Research.Vol.57,pp2003,1 May,2015.
- Masaki Nakamiya, Yasuhiro Kawakatsu. "Transfer Trajectories from the Moon to Sun-Earth Halo Orbits" Journal of Guidance, Control and Dynamics. Vol. 37, No. 3, May-June 2014.
- Campagnola, S., Buffington, B. B., Petropoulos, A. E. , Jovian tour design for orbiter and lander missions to Europa. Acta Astronautica, 2014, Vol. 100, pp. 6881, DOI:10.1016/j.actaastro.2014.02.005.
- Campagnola, S., Boutonnet, A., Schoenmaekers, J., Grebow,D.J., Petropoulos, A. E., Russell, R. P., Tisserand-Leveraging Transfers, Journal of Guidance, Control, and Dynamics, Vol. 34, No. 4, pp. 12021210, 2014. DOI:10.2514/1.62369.
- Campagnola, S., Boutonnet, A., Martens, W., Masters, A. Mission design for the exploration of Neptune and Triton (IEEE Aerospace and Electronics Systems Magazine, in print.
- Masato Nakamura, Yasuhiro Kawakatsu, Chikako Hirose, Takeshi Imamura, Nobuaki Ishii, Takumi Abe, Atsushi Yamazaki, Manabu Yamada, Kazunori Ogohara, Kazunori Uemizu, Tetsuya Fukuhara, Shoko Ohtsuki, Takehiko Satoh, Makoto Suzuki, Munetaka Ueno, Junichi Nakatsuka, Naomoto Iwagami, Makoto Taguchi, Shigeto Watanabe, Yukihiro Takahashi, George L. Hashimoto, Hiroki Yamamoto. "Return to Venus of the Japanese Venus Climate Orbiter AKATSUKI" Acta Astronautica. 93 (2014) pp.384-389, 30 July, 2013.
- Sugimoto, Y. and Van der Ha, J.C., “Thermal Radiation Modeling for Interplanetary Spacecraft Orbit Propagation,” Transaction of the Japan Society for Aeronautical and Space Sciences, Aerospace Technology Japan, Vol. 10, No. ists28, pp. Pd 33-38, January 26, 2013
- Campagnola S., Russell R., Skerritt P., Flybys in the planar, circular, restricted, three-body problem, Celestial Mechanics and Dynamical Astronomy, Vol. 113, No. 3, pp. 343-368, 2012, DOI: 10.1007/s10569-012-9427-x.
- Campagnola, S. and Kawakatsu, Y.,Jupiter Magnetospheric Orbiter: Trajectory Design in the Jovian System, Journal of Spacecraft and Rockets, Vol. 49, No. 2, pp. 318-324, 2012, DOI: 10.2514/1.A32055.
- Campagnola, S. and Kawakatsu, Y., Three-Dimensional Resonant Hopping Strategies and the Jupiter Magnetospheric Orbiter, Journal of Guidance, Control, and Dynamics, Vol. 35, No. 1, January-February 2012, pp. 340-344, 2012, DOI: 10.2514/1.53334.

- Shuntaro Suda,Yasuhiro Kawakatsu,"Orbit Manipulation by use of Lunar Swing-by on a Hyperbolic Trajectory",The 27th AAS/AIAA Space Flight Mechanics Meeting,San Antonio,USA,Feb 5-9,2017.
- Yosuke Kawabata,Yasuhiro Kawakatsu,"Mission design of DESTINY+",67th International Astronautical Congress,Mexicanos,Sep 26-30,2016.
- Makoto Horikawa,Takanao Saiki,Yasuhiro Kawakatsu,Hiroaki Yoshimura,"Escape Trajectories for Martian Moons eXplorer using Chemical and Electric Propulsion",2016 AIAA/AAS Astrodynamics Specialist Conference,Long Beach,USA,Sep 12-15,2016.
- Hongru Chen, Yasuhiro Kawakatsu and Toshiya Hanada, "Earth Escape from a Sun-Earth Halo Orbit Using Unstable Manifolds and Lunar Gravity Assists", 25th Workshop on Astrodynamics and Flight Mechanics, ISAS/JAXA, Jul 28-29, 2015.
- Hongru Chen, Yasuhiro Kawakatsu and Toshiya Hanada, “Transfers from Sun-Earth Halo Orbits to the Moon”, 30th International Symposium on Space Technology and Science, Kobe , Hyogo, Japan, Jul 4-10, 2015.
- Hongru Chen, Yasuhiro Kawakatsu and Toshiya Hanada, "Phasing Problem for Sun-Earth Halo Orbit to Lunar Swingby Encounter Transfers", 25th AAS/AIAA Space Flight Mechanics Meeting, Williamsburg, VA, Jan 11-15, 2015.
- Yam, C. H., Sugimoto, Y., Ozaki, N., Sarli, B., Chen, H., Campagnola, S., Ogura, S., Kawabata, Y, Kawakatsu, Y., Nakajima, S., Funase, R., Nakasuka, S., "Launch Window and Sensitivity Analysis of an Asteroid Flyby Mission with Miniature Ion Propulsion System: PROCYON," 65th International Astronautical Congress, Toronto, Canada, Sep. 29-Oct. 3, 2014, IAC-14-C1.9.9.
- Yam, C. H., Zuiani, F., Kawakatsu, Y., Yamamoto, T., and Vasile, M., "Orbit Raising Trajectory and System Analysis for the Mission DESTINY," 24th International Symposium on Space Flight Dynamics, Maryland, U.S.A., May 5-9, 2014.
- Campagnola, S., Russell, R. Optimal control on Gauss' Equation (Proceedings of the 2nd DyCoSS conference, 2014).
- Yam, C. H., and Kawakatsu, Y., "High Fidelity Direct Transcription Method For Optimization Of Many Revolution, Low-thrust Trajectories," 2nd IAA Conference on Dynamics and Control of Space Systems, Rome, Italy, March 24-26, 2014.
- Ogura, S., Kawakatsu, Y. Matsuoka, A., Taguchi, M. "Visual Orbit Design for Next Mars Exploration Mission" 2nd IAA Conference on Dynamics and Control of Space Systems. IAA-AAS-DyCoSS2-14-06-02, 2014 3/24-26.
- Hongru Chen, Yasuhiro Kawakatsu and Toshiya Hanada. "Low-energy Escape from the Sun-Earth L2 Utilizing Unstable Manifolds and Lunar Gravity Assists" 24th AAS/AIAA Space Flight Mechanics Meeting. AAS 14-468, 2014 1/26-30.
- Sarli, B.V.; Kawakatsu, Y. "Orbit Transfer Optimization for Multiple Asteroid Flybys" SICE Annual Conference. TuBT7.4, 2013 9/14-17.
- Yoshihide Sugimoto, Yasuhiro Kawakatsu and Takanao Saiki. "Orbit maintenance method for orbits around Sun-Earth L2 in ER3BP" 23rd Workshop on JAXA Astrodynamics and Flight Mechanics. C-17, 2013 7/29-30.
- Yasuhiro Kawakatsu. "An orbit plan of AKATSUKI to avoid long eclipse on Venus orbit" 23rd Workshop on JAXA Astrodynamics and Flight Mechanics. B-13, 2013 7/29-30.
- Federico Zuiani, Yasuhiro Kawakatsu and Massimiliano Vasile. "Multi-objective optimisation of multi-revolution, low-thrust orbit raising for DESTINY mission" 23rd Workshop on JAXA Astrodynamics and Flight Mechanics. B-14, 2013 7/29-30.
- Yasuhiro Kawakatsu, Kazutaka Nishiyama, Ikkoh Funaki, Takahiro Iwata. "DESTINY Mission Description and Its Value" The 29th International Symposium on Space Technology and Science (ISTS). 2013-k-47, 2013 6/2-9.
- Yoshihide Sugimoto, Stefano Campagnola, Takanao Saiki, Yasuhiro Kawakatsu. "Multi Revolution Orbit Design in Sun-Earth Elliptic Restricted 3-Body Problem" The 29th International Symposium on Space Technology and Science (ISTS). 2013-d-02, 2013 6/2-9.
- Saori Ikeda, Yoshihide Sugimoto, Yasuhiro Kawakatsu, Toshiya Hanada. "Systematic Analysis of Venus Earth Gravity Assist (VEGA) Sequence and Its Application to Mission Design" The 29th International Symposium on Space Technology and Science (ISTS). 2013-d-22, 2013 6/2-9.
- Campagnola, S., Kawakatsu, Y. Recovery options for the Akatsuki spacecraft, International Astronautical Conference, Beijing, China, Sep. 2013.