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Relativistic celestial mechanics at sub-microarcsecond accuracy level

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Einstein stated two dictums, so that more experimental facts can replace the previously adopted hypotheses and General Relativity (GR) can evolve to “grand aim” or perfection. In the absence of appropriate experimental facts during pre-CEREPAC (Century-long Experience of Relativity-related Experiments on Physics, Astronomy and Celestial-mechanics) era, Einstein found no “escape” from the consequence of non-Euclidean geometry, while keeping all frames permissible based on contemporary knowledge. Bergmann also stated in 1968 that the “principle of general covariance” has brought about serious complication in GR. During CEREPAC, relativists and mathematical-astronomers invariably identified the appropriate “nature’s preferred-frame,” which was later found essential for operation of conservation laws. Based on CEREPAC, replacing the experimentally unverifiable hypotheses with experimentally proven principles, and improving upon the GR-astronomers model (developed by JPL, USA, as an evolved-version of GR-conventional model) in two successive stages, GR was remodeled to what became evident as Evolved GR (EGR), after it enabled the elimination of all earlier-adopted ad-hoc methods or approaches, and of the problems, paradoxes and anomalies, associated with the applications of GR, during CEREPAC, and after it unraveled the “General-relativistic nature of speed-of-light (c)” which links the variable c r with F r, the local Gravitational Red-Shift Factor (as stated by Einstein between 1911‐1921). As a consequence of the space-age developments in numerical simulation and in the availability of precision observational data, it got proven that nature itself operates the conservation laws of energy, and of linear and angular momentums (both magnitudes and directions), with respect to the appropriate “nature’s preferred frame”; this provided sufficient reason for giving up the “relativity of all frames,” bringing back Euclidean geometry in EGR. Euclidean space in EGR enabled development of a Prototype of future Ephemerides, leading to five orders-of-magnitude improvement in accuracy of computation of precession of celestial orbits, using three independent methods; this methodology of Prototype Ephemeris and “three-methods-match” can also be applied while remaining exclusively within the precincts of GR, by using one alternative mode of running the EGR program for planetary and Lunar orbits, by opting for GRTOPT=Y; this mode utilizes exclusively the GR equations instead of EGR equations; in fact, this mode is the GR-astronomers (modified) model that was really an intermediate stage of evolution (as mentioned above) between the GR-astronomers model and the EGR model. This model incorporates: (1) All good (and, experimentally proven) features from the three generations of GR models (Einstein’s original, Bergmann’s and Misner-Thorne-Wheeler or MTW), and (2) The “Nature-adopted” real orbital model (as proven from comparison of the computed precession values at Micro-arcsecond {μas} level using the “three-methods-match”) for its Methodology for Conservation of Linear and Orbital Angular Momentums, in a polar coordinate system (r, , Φ). This model computes: (1) Precession of celestial orbits at nearly the same accuracy as that done using the EGR model, and (2) About three digit more accurate (than reported by Folkner in 2014, from fitting lunar laser ranging data with an updated lunar gravity field from the GRAIL mission, etc.) orbits of inner planets and the Moon.
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Keywords: Celestial mechanics;; Ephemerides;; Evolved General Relativity;; GRAIL mission; General Relativity;; MicroArcsecond;; Orbital Motion;; Planets and Satellites;; Precession;; Space Experiment;

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: September 30, 2019

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  • Physics Essays has been established as an international journal dedicated to theoretical and experimental aspects of fundamental problems in Physics and, generally, to the advancement of basic knowledge of Physics. The Journal's mandate is to publish rigorous and methodological examinations of past, current, and advanced concepts, methods and results in physics research. Physics Essays dedicates itself to the publication of stimulating exploratory, and original papers in a variety of physics disciplines, such as spectroscopy, quantum mechanics, particle physics, electromagnetic theory, astrophysics, space physics, mathematical methods in physics, plasma physics, philosophical aspects of physics, chemical physics, and relativity.
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