|Title:||The Planetary and Lunar Ephemerides DE430 and DE431|
|Author(s):||William M. Folkner, James G. Williams, Dale H. Boggs, Ryan S. Park, and Petr Kuchynka|
|Reference:||IPN Progress Report 42-196 (2014)|
The planetary and lunar ephemerides DE430 and DE431 are generated by fitting numerically integrated orbits of the Moon and planets to observations. The present-day lunar orbit is known to submeter accuracy through fitting lunar laser ranging data with an updated lunar gravity field from the Gravity Recovery and Interior Laboratory (GRAIL) mission. The orbits of the inner planets are known to subkilometer accuracy through fitting radio tracking measurements of spacecraft in orbit about them. Very long baseline interferometry measurements of spacecraft at Mars allow the orientation of the ephemeris to be tied to the International Celestial Reference Frame with an accuracy of 0″.0002. This orientation is the limiting error source for the orbits of the terrestrial planets, and corresponds to orbit uncertainties of a few hundred meters. The orbits of Jupiter and Saturn are determined to accuracies of tens of kilometers as a result of fitting spacecraft tracking data. The orbits of Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto are determined primarily from astrometric observations, for which measurement uncertainties due to the Earth's atmosphere, combined with star catalog uncertainties, limit position accuracies to several thousand kilometers. DE430 and DE431 differ in their integrated time span and lunar dynamical modeling. The dynamical model for DE430 included a damping term between the Moon's liquid core and solid mantle that gives the best fit to lunar laser ranging data but that is not suitable for backward integration of more than a few centuries. The ephemeris DE431 is similar to DE430 but was fit without the core/mantle damping term, so the lunar orbit is less accurate than in DE430 for times near the current epoch, but is more suitable for times more than a few centuries in the past. DE431 is a longer integration (covering years -13,200 to +17,191) than DE430 (covering years 1550 to 2650).