Journal Article

Orbit classification in arbitrary 2D and 3D potentials

Daniel D. Carpintero and Luis A. Aguilar

in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society

Published on behalf of The Royal Astronomical Society

Volume 298, issue 1, pages 1-21
Published in print July 1998 | ISSN: 0035-8711
Published online July 1998 | e-ISSN: 1365-2966 | DOI:
Orbit classification in arbitrary 2D and 3D potentials

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A method of classifying generic orbits in arbitrary 2D and 3D potentials is presented. It is based on the concept of spectral dynamics introduced by Binney &38; Spergel that uses the Fourier transform of the time series of each coordinate. The method is tested using a number of potentials previously studied in the literature and is shown to distinguish correctly between regular and irregular orbits, to identify the various families of regular orbits (boxes, loops, tubes, boxlets, etc.), and to recognize the second-rank resonances that bifurcate from them. The method returns the position of the potential centre and, for 2D potentials, the orientation of the principal axes as well, should this be unknown. A further advantage of the method is that it has been encoded in a fortran program that does not require user intervention, except for ‘fine tuning’ of search parameters that define the numerical limits of the code. The automatic character makes the program suitable for classifying large numbers of orbits.

Keywords: celestial mechanics; stellar dynamics; galaxies: kinematics and dynamics

Journal Article.  0 words. 

Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics

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