Free Newsletters - Space - Defense - Environment - Energy - Solar - Nuclear
..
. 24/7 Space News .




TECH SPACE
Focus on space debris: Envisat
by Staff Writers
Paris (ESA) Oct 12, 2012


Graphic: Ozone hole over the Antarctic.

Space debris came into focus last week at the International Astronautical Congress in Naples, Italy. Envisat, ESA's largest Earth observation satellite, ended its mission last spring and was a subject of major interest in the Space Debris and Legal session.

Envisat was planned and designed in 1987-1990, a time when space debris was not considered to be a serious problem and before the existence of mitigation guidelines, established by the UN in 2007 and adopted the next year by ESA for all of its projects.

Only later, during the post-launch operational phase, did Envisat's orbit of about 780 km become a risky debris environment, particularly following the Chinese antisatellite missile test in 2007 and the collision between the Iridium and the Cosmos satellites in 2009.

Lowering Envisat to an orbit that would allow reentry within 25 years, however, was never an option because of its design and limited amount of fuel.

Even if controllers had lowered the satellite immediately after launch in 2002, there would not have been enough fuel to bring it down low enough - to around 600 km - where it could reenter within 25 years.

In 2010, part of the remaining fuel was used to lower the satellite slightly into a less crowded orbit at 768 km, while keeping enough reserve to provide collision avoidance for several years.

The lower orbit also ensured continuity of crucial Earth-observation data until the next generation of satellites - the Sentinels - are fully operational in 2013.

In April 2012, however, contact with Envisat was suddenly lost, preventing ESA from controlling the spacecraft and disrupting data provision to the international Earth observation user community.

ESA is strongly committed to reducing space debris. Today, the deorbiting of missions is taken into consideration during the development of future satellites, and during the operations of current satellites when technically feasible.

Indeed, ESA decided to terminate operations of the 16-year-old ERS-2 satellite in 2011 because there was still enough fuel to lower its orbit to about 570 km, allowing it to reenter well within 25 years.

During the last years of Envisat, ESA began to investigate new technology to deorbit space debris in a controlled fashion.

The problem of debris in low orbits is of paramount importance. ESA space debris represents about 0.5% of the more than 16 000 objects catalogued by the US surveillance network.

ESA is working together with other agencies to reinforce international cooperation in monitoring space debris and to study mitigation and remediation measures that will ensure the future of space endeavours.

During its extended operational lifetime, Envisat provided crucial Earth observation data not only to scientists, but also to many operational services, such as monitoring floods and oil spills.

Its data supported civil protection authorities in managing natural and man-made disasters.

An estimated 2500 scientific publications so far have been based on the data provided by the satellite during its ten-year life.

.


Related Links
ESA Space Debris Office
Space Technology News - Applications and Research






Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks
del.icio.usdel.icio.us DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle




Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News





TECH SPACE
Strathclyde takes the lead in space research
Glasgow UK (SPX) Oct 09, 2012
Academics at the University of Strathclyde in Glasgow are set to investigate the removal of space debris and deflection of asteroids - leading the first research-based training network of its kind in the world. The 'Stardust' project will train the next generation of scientists, engineers and policy-makers with Strathclyde leading 14 partners across Europe in a new euros 4 million program ... read more


TECH SPACE
Russian moon mission said funded, ready

Rover designed to drill for moon ice

China has no timetable for manned moon landing

Senior scientist discusses China's lunar orbiter challenges

TECH SPACE
Mars rover makes surprising rock find

Meteorite delivers Martian secrets to University of Alberta researcher

Mars Rock Touched by NASA Curiosity has Surprises

Resume Working with First Scooped Sample

TECH SPACE
Austrian daredevil to make new space jump bid

Austrian daredevil eyes new space jump at weekend

Grants help scientists explore boundary between science and science fiction

Dead stars could be cosmic 'GPS'

TECH SPACE
ChangE-2 Mission To Lagrange L2 Point

Meeting of heads of ESA and China Manned Space Agency

China Spacesat gets 18-million-USD gov't support

Tiangong Orbit Change Signals Likely Date for Shenzhou 10

TECH SPACE
Crew Unloads Dragon, Finds Treats

Station Crew Opens Dragon Hatch

NASA and International Partners Approve Year Long ISS Stay

Year on ISS planned ahead of manned Mars mission

TECH SPACE
India to launch 58 space missions in next 5 years

SpaceX Dragon Successfully Attaches To Space Station

Another Ariane 5 Enters Launch Campaign Queue

SpaceX capsule links up with space station: NASA

TECH SPACE
Nearby Super-Earth Likely a Diamond Planet

Candels Team Discovers Dusty Galaxies At Ancient Epoch With Hubble Space Telescope

Large water reservoirs at the dawn of stellar birth

Comet crystals found in a nearby planetary system

TECH SPACE
Swedish breakthrough in space on NASA satellite with electronics from AAC Microtec

US appeals court lifts ban on Samsung-Google phone

Focus on space debris: Envisat

Weizmann Institute Scientists observe quantum effects in cold chemistry




The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2014 - Space Media Network. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement