Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

Swiss Satellite to Clean Up Space Debris
Space Safety Magazine ^ | February 15, 2012 | Joel Spark

Posted on 02/15/2012 9:59:52 AM PST by JerseyanExile

The Swiss Space Center at the Swiss Federal Institute for Technology in Lausanna, or EPFL, announced Wednesday that it is planning to launch a satellite to remove debris from low-Earth orbit. The 11-million USD satellite, named CleanSpace One, is intended to actively intercept and deorbit defunct satellites that contribute to the growing cloud of LEO debris as they disintegrate and collide with one another.

“It has become essential to be aware of the existence of [space] debris and the risks that are run by its proliferation,” said Claude Nicollier, astronaut and EPFL professor. Volker Gass, the director of the Swiss Space Center, said it hopes to “offer and sell a whole family of ready-made systems, designed as sustainably as possible, that are able to de-orbit several different kinds of satellites.”

EPFL has stated that the first CleanSpace One satellite would be launched within three to five years. The target mission would be to intercept two Swiss satellites, launched in 2009 and 2010.

There are several technical challenges the program will need to overcome before the satellite can be launched, the first of which is the requirement for the small satellite to perform precise adjustments of its trajectory to intercept its target. Swiss engineers are already investigating new technologies for ultra-compact space-capable motors. They are also trying to overcome the difficulties associated with grappling the satellites and deorbiting them such that they disintegrate in the upper atmosphere.

(Excerpt) Read more at spacesafetymagazine.com ...


TOPICS: Foreign Affairs; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: satellite; space; switzerland

1 posted on 02/15/2012 10:00:10 AM PST by JerseyanExile
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: JerseyanExile

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DakRYsUIiIE&feature=player_detailpage

Good Scifi on space trash.. no not Quark !


2 posted on 02/15/2012 10:04:17 AM PST by Bidimus1
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: JerseyanExile
...the growing cloud of LEO debris


3 posted on 02/15/2012 10:05:44 AM PST by Vaquero (Don't pick a fight with an old guy. If he is too old to fight, he'll just kill you.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: JerseyanExile

Good idea, but probably too complicated. It will take a ton of fuel to do the maneuvers required to do multiple intercepts.

Might be a better idea to do a cheaper system with several ‘parasite’ units launched all at once. Each one targets a single dead bird, latches on (I’m picturing use of a super-sticky surface, but that’s a little nutty), then does a modest burn that decays the orbit slowly... requiring less fuel and less complexity.


4 posted on 02/15/2012 10:09:13 AM PST by alancarp (Liberals are all for shared pain... until they're included in the pain group.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: JerseyanExile
"the first of which is the requirement for the small satellite to perform precise adjustments of its trajectory to intercept its target"

After they succeed in developing this technology for honing in on fast moving space debris, it may take just a few more years to enhance the capabilities so they can keep up with Romney's ever-changing political trajectories.

Unfortunately, not in time for this election cycle.

5 posted on 02/15/2012 10:10:27 AM PST by who_would_fardels_bear
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Bidimus1

I can’t believe somebody else remembers the space garbage scow show!... I loved that, but alas, it was doomed from the start.


6 posted on 02/15/2012 10:10:31 AM PST by alancarp (Liberals are all for shared pain... until they're included in the pain group.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: JerseyanExile

Very interesting website. Information (including maps and times) on past and predicted reentry of space junk.


7 posted on 02/15/2012 10:11:02 AM PST by omega4412
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: alancarp
Quark!

ficus...palindrome et al....

pretty crappy show...but back then there was little to watch...

8 posted on 02/15/2012 10:12:26 AM PST by Vaquero (Don't pick a fight with an old guy. If he is too old to fight, he'll just kill you.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 6 | View Replies]

To: JerseyanExile

Under cold war definitions, this is a space weapon.


9 posted on 02/15/2012 10:13:39 AM PST by Ingtar ("But it is hard to maintain an aura of invincibility after you have been vinced..." Sowell)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Bidimus1

My favorite line from that show was the debate as to when to wake the crew up from Stasis Sleep.

Capt: Computer, wake us up Sept 23rd at 0530

Crewmember: Awww, why do we have to get up so early ..


10 posted on 02/15/2012 10:18:12 AM PST by Hodar ( Who needs laws; when this FEELS so right?)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: JerseyanExile

https://www.schticky.com/?refcode=1002&ot=tm


11 posted on 02/15/2012 10:35:12 AM PST by Kickass Conservative (Liberals, Useful Idiots Voting for Useless Idiots...)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: JerseyanExile

Seems suspicious. Who is paying for it? I bet we are paying for it through the UN or something.


12 posted on 02/15/2012 10:36:03 AM PST by JimWayne
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: JerseyanExile

Mega-Maid

13 posted on 02/15/2012 10:38:38 AM PST by vikingd00d (chown -R us ./base)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: vikingd00d

“Commence Operation Vacu-Suck!”


14 posted on 02/15/2012 10:42:39 AM PST by dfwgator (Don't wake up in a roadside ditch. Get rid of Romney.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 13 | View Replies]

To: JerseyanExile

Why doesn’t it surprise me those tidy Swiss want to do some space cleaning. :)


15 posted on 02/15/2012 10:44:52 AM PST by C19fan
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: JerseyanExile

How about using Hall Effect ion engines in these satellites to help bring down dead sats?


16 posted on 02/15/2012 10:48:10 AM PST by Jack Hydrazine (It's the end of the world as we know it and I feel fine!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: JerseyanExile
Sounds like a job for Rosie!
17 posted on 02/15/2012 10:50:36 AM PST by Kartographer ("We mutually pledge to each other our lives, our fortunes and our sacred honor.")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: alancarp

I have seen interceptors the size of a hockey puck with hypergolic engines, valves, sensors, and avionics. Of course, I cannot tell you how we fabricate such small spacecraft.

Send said hockey puck to a target, fire a net to snare the target, and then unreel a conductive tether with a resistor to dump the current as heat.

De-orbit is pretty fast, even from high altitudes.

In wartime it would come in handy as well.


18 posted on 02/15/2012 10:51:57 AM PST by darth
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 4 | View Replies]

To: JerseyanExile

Hmm. An orbital Roomba. Zoomba?


19 posted on 02/15/2012 10:55:57 AM PST by Ramius (Personally, I give us one chance in three. More tea anyone?)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Vaquero

Now that right there is funny! I don’t care who you are.


20 posted on 02/15/2012 11:06:18 AM PST by Afterguard
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 3 | View Replies]

To: Ingtar
Under cold war definitions, this is a space weapon.

In the wrong hands...

21 posted on 02/15/2012 11:16:46 AM PST by bgill (Romney & Obama are both ineligible. A non-NBC GOP prez shuts down all ?s on Obama's admin)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 9 | View Replies]

To: JerseyanExile

22 posted on 02/15/2012 11:26:51 AM PST by freedomlover (Make sure you're in love - before you move in the heavy stuff)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: JerseyanExile

Surprised this isn’t a Mexican satellite.


23 posted on 02/15/2012 11:55:18 AM PST by mikey_hates_everything
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: darth

Is it something related to Brilliant Pebbles?


24 posted on 02/15/2012 12:00:18 PM PST by Jack Hydrazine (It's the end of the world as we know it and I feel fine!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 18 | View Replies]

To: JerseyanExile

Reminds me of a short-lived TV series in the 1970’s.
Richard Benjamin played the Captain of an interstellar
garbage truck.


25 posted on 02/15/2012 12:49:29 PM PST by Buckeye McFrog
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson