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Results of processing of the lunar laser ranging observations of 1970−2017

Pavlov D. A.

Известия ГАО в Пулкове, № 225: Труды Всероссийской астрометрической конференции «Пулково-2018», Санкт-Петербург, 189–194 (2018)

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Lunar laser ranging (LLR) is presently the most precise technique for studying the dynamics of the Moon and building the lunar reference frame. Since 2013, the results of the GRAIL mission are available with precise model of lunar gravitational potential, which is also useful for improving the lunar dynamical model. This article presents the results of improvement the lunar model with terms accounting for solar pressure and figure-figure torque between Earth (degree 2) and Moon (degree 3). At present, the processing of the LLR observations reveals some phenomena that require explanation. Two of such phenomena discussed in the article are: the determined angular velocity (X component) between ephemeris frame and celestial frame and the deviation of the lunar principal axes in the model from the true principal axes of the whole Moon (perhaps related to the model lacking some physical effect coming from tides or the lunar structure).