Actually the sphere of influence etc is used to solve the interplanetary transfer using the patch conic approximations to simplify an "N " body problem into a series of 2 body problems.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Patched_co ... roximation
Something I learned today. +1 to DDM and -1 to me
Regarding the rediff article about "NASA Support"., the article attributes non-existing contributions from NASA for genuflecting Indians! First thing we need to do seriously is to trash such articles.
Chandrayaan/Mangalyaan are India's missions and Indian missions alone. Further Indians have been more open and honest., pointing out - here we are launching a bus and this is the scientific goal. If you think you have a good instrument to measure that, we would like to offer you the bus and in the process also learn how you measure something. Nobody is doing us any favour by putting their science experiment on our bus.
Without Chandrayan, we would not have confirmed water on moon. The heartburn among americans when that was announced was seen to be believed.
And for tracking purposes, they are covered under international agreements where everybody has to cooperate. We are sharing one earth onlee,,,