[amsat-bb] Can we get them to fix AO-40 first then?
David - KG4ZLB
kg4zlb at googlemail.com
Sun Oct 11 09:30:31 PDT 2009
Rogue satellites to be cleared from Earth's orbit by German robots
German-built robots are to be sent into Earth's orbit to repair 'dead
satellites' or push them into outer space, according to a report in
Sunday's Guardian newspaper.
Robots that rescue failing satellites and push 'dead' ones into outer
space should be ready in four years, it has emerged. Experts described
the development by German scientists as a crucial step in preventing a
disaster in the Earth's crowded orbit.
Last year it was reported that critical levels of debris circling the
Earth were threatening astronauts' lives and the future of the
multibillion-pound satellite communications industry. But senior figures
at the German Aerospace Centre (DLR) told the /Observer/ they have been
given the go-ahead to tackle a crisis that will come to a head in the
next five to 10 years as more orbiting objects run out of fuel.
Their robots will dock with failing satellites to carry out repairs or
push them into "graveyard orbits", freeing vital space in geostationary
orbit. This is the narrow band 22,000 miles above the Earth in which
orbiting objects appear fixed at the same point. More than 200 dead
satellites litter this orbit. Within 10 years that number could increase
fivefold, the International Association for the Advancement of Space
Safety has warned.
You can read the full article / 'Rogue satellites to be cleared from
Earth's orbit by German robots'/ at:
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