Spatial Positions

In MaxQ and SPICE, the origin of a coordinate system is often defined by an “Observer” location. Coordinates and state vectors of “Target” objects are computed relative the the Observer (at the coordinate system’s origin).

There are also a few specially designated Observer/Target locations in MaxQ/SPICE.

Observer / Target It is
MOON, MARS, etc Celestial bodies
[body] BARYCENTER The point in space multiple bodies mutually orbit
SOLAR SYSTEM BARYCENTER Solar System “Barycenter”. The point in space the Sun and Planets etc mutually orbit. This is “home” to everything else.
SSB Short form for above
EARTH BARYCENTER The point in space EARTH and MOON mutually orbit.
EMB Short form for above

An Observer location combined with a Reference Frame fully describe a coordinate system’s spatial and rotational positions. The only detail left to agree on is the exact coodinate system type - rectangular, spherical, or otherwise.

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