The point in an elliptical orbit said to be at which a satellite is at its furthest from the Earth is referred to as apogee. Whenever a satellite is at its apogee, its travel around the body is also at its slowest. The origin of the name alone is enough to dictate such meaning. Apo is a Greek term for ‘away,’ while gaia is ‘earth. In fact, the term apogee is just a derivative of the Latin apogaeum, which was in turn taken from the Ptolemaic Greek term apogaion.

The word ‘apogee’ is specific to the Earth; thus, there are other terms that are used to mean the same but for a different celestial body. This is true too for perigee, the opposite of apogee, which refers to the point at which a satellite is at it’s nearest to the Earth when following an elliptical path.

A word that is strongly related to apogee and which is actually often used in its stead is apsis, a generic term often used to mean the point at which an orbiting body is at its furthest from or nearest to the central body. Apoapsis is the general term for the furthest point, while periapsis is the nearest point. These terms can be utilized to describe any celestial body, unlike apogee or perigee that can be used only when the subject is the Earth.

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