Earth-to-Mars Interplanetary Pork Chop Plots

A MATLAB Script for Creating Pork Chop Plots of Ballistic Earth-to-Mars Trajectories


Updated Sun, 16 Jan 2022 17:26:39 +0000

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PDF document and MATLAB script that can be used to create and plot interplanetary “pork chop” plots for Type I and Type II Earth-to-Mars trajectories. These plots illustrate the behavior of launch energy (C3L), right ascension (RLA) and declination (DLA) of the departure hyperbola, time-of-flight, and arrival v-infinity, DLA and RLA for a range of user-defined launch and arrival calendar dates.
The data required for these contour plots is created by solving the heliocentric, two-body “patched-conic” Lambert problem. A patched-conic trajectory ignores the gravitational effect of both the launch and arrivals planets on the heliocentric trajectory. Pork chop plots are typically used for preliminary mission analysis.

Cite As

David Eagle (2023). Earth-to-Mars Interplanetary Pork Chop Plots (, MATLAB Central File Exchange. Retrieved .

MATLAB Release Compatibility
Created with R2019b
Compatible with any release
Platform Compatibility
Windows macOS Linux

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Version Published Release Notes

Updated to use MICE routines and the DE421.bsp ephemeris

Added contour plot of total heliocentric delta-v. Updated PDF document.

Includes MICE version in archive.

Updated to use the DE421 binary ephemeris file from JPL. PDF document also updated.