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Environmental aspects of passive de-orbiting devices

Thu, 12/09/2021 - 09:43
Start Date: 
2017
Programme: 
Discovery
End Date: 
2018
Programme Reference: 
15/095
Country: 
Italy
Contractor: 
Politechnico di Milano
Description: 

The technical objective of this study is to understand the net effect of using deorbiting technologies like sails or tethers over the future debris population around the Earth. In principle, indeed, these attractive technologies will support the compliancy to post-mitigation disposal guidelines, for small missions. However, the increased cross section also increases the collision risk.

  • What will happen in case of collisions with deorbiting satellites using these techniques?
  • When will a catastrophic collision take place and how can it be modelled?
  • How will the debris population around the Earth evolve in the future when more and more satellites will use these technologies to deorbit?
  • Is it possible to performe collision avoidance manoeuvre when a sail or a tether are employed?

The current study will answer to all these questions.

Application Domain: 
Generic Technologies
Keywords: 
Space debris
Deorbit
Demisability
CleanSpace
Executive summary: