Subscribe free to our newsletters via your
. 24/7 Space News .


Subscribe free to our newsletters via your




















TECH SPACE
Space Traffic Management
by Launchspace Staff Writers
Bethesda MD (SPX) Jan 31, 2017


The detrimental effects of space junk grow worse each year, putting the international space infrastructures increasingly at risk as our communications, science and security networks rely ever more heavily on the interconnected system of satellites orbiting the skies.

Those familiar with air traffic management architectures understand the constraints of aircraft flying in the atmosphere, vehicle dynamics and command and control techniques. Unfortunately, space traffic has many more degrees of freedom and much less control capability. Add to this the completely uncontrolled nature of space debris and the reality that most debris objects cannot be tracked and motion cannot be accurately measured or simulated.

In fact, orbiting debris is a product of negligence. Over the first 60 years of space flight, mission plans ended with the completion of in-space operations. Satellites were shut down and left in their orbits, subject to natural influences. Little thought was given to any collateral effects of objects "adrift" in space, because "space" was thought of as "big." An analogy might be the ocean disposal of waste items, where junk gets lost in the vastness of the seas, either by sinking to the bottom or by simply drifting with ocean currents.

By contrast, a "drifting" satellite remnant in low orbit is travelling at a speed in excess of 7.3 km/sec (16,300 mph). Since orbiting objects can travel in all directions, collisions between satellites and debris can occur at speeds of over 14.6 km/sec (32,600 mph).

Of the suspected hundreds-of-thousands of debris objects, only about 25,000 are 10 cm (4 inches) or larger in size, and only these can be tracked. The majority of the 1014 junk items remain beyond current tracking capabilities, but are dangerous in terms of causing significant damage to operating spacecraft.

The detrimental effects of space junk grow worse each year, putting the international space infrastructures increasingly at risk as our communications, science and security networks rely ever more heavily on the interconnected system of satellites orbiting the skies.

While we understand weather and have learned techniques to deal with it, the impact and disposition of orbital debris are not fully understood. Unlike weather, space junk is man-made and, if not properly dealt with, will significantly hinder the nation's future economy and security.

It is a growing threat to space-based communications, weather forecasting, banking processes, scientific exploration, Earth observation and future space tourism. Space commerce is growing, and as this industry expands the need for an effective traffic management system will become critical to commercial growth and exploitation of space.

At the moment, there are no programs in place to deal with orbital debris, even though new satellites continue to be launched. In fact, more than 10,000 new satellites are projected to enter service in the next few years. New launches contribute to the already-large orbital debris population.

With over 60 countries operating in space, the exponentially growing problem of orbital debris will take international collaborations and partnerships to conceive and develop innovative solutions and strategies as part of a worldwide space traffic management architecture.


Comment on this article using your Disqus, Facebook, Google or Twitter login.

.


Related Links
Launchspace
Space Technology News - Applications and Research






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

Previous Report
TECH SPACE
Southwestern alumna becomes orbital debris scientist at NASA
Georgetown TX (SPX) Jan 09, 2017
Alumna uses computational modeling of "space trash" to keep astronauts, satellites, and the international space station safe. Growing up in Pearland, Texas-just outside of Houston-was quite the treat for Southwestern alumna, Alyssa Pampell Manis '07. The mathematics lover (and major) has always admired NASA. "NASA's right down the road, so it was always something in the back of my mi ... read more


TECH SPACE
Full Braking at Alpha Centauri

New Era of Space Travel: Private Station May Replace ISS by Late 2020

The Outer Space Treaty has been remarkably successful - but is it fit for the modern age?

Progress MS-03 cargo spacecraft to reenter January 31

TECH SPACE
ISRO tests C25 Cryogenic Upper Stage of GSLV MkIII

NASA sounding rocket launches into Alaskan night

SmallGEO's first flight reaches orbit

Russia to check space flight engines over faulty parts

TECH SPACE
Meteorite reveals 2 billion years of volcanic activity on Mars

Opportunity marks 13 years of ground operations on Mars

Similar-Looking Ridges on Mars Have Diverse Origins

Commercial Crew's Role in Path to Mars

TECH SPACE
China looks to Mars, Jupiter exploration

China's first cargo spacecraft to leave factory

China launches commercial rocket mission Kuaizhou-1A

China Space Plan to Develop "Strength and Size"

TECH SPACE
Iridium Adds Eighth Launch with SpaceX for Satellite Rideshare

Space, Ukrainian-style: Through Crisis to Revival

ESA Planetary Science Archive gets a new look

Iridium-1 NEXT Launched on a Falcon 9

TECH SPACE
NASA's New Shape-Shifting Radiator Inspired by Origami

Space Traffic Management

Japan 'space junk' collector in trouble

Anatomy of a debris incident

TECH SPACE
New planet imager delivers first science at Keck

Dedicated Planet Imager Opens Its Eyes to Other Worlds

First footage of a living stylodactylid shrimp filter-feeding at depth of 4826m

SF State astronomer searches for signs of life on Wolf 1061 exoplanet

TECH SPACE
Public to Choose Jupiter Picture Sites for NASA Juno

Experiment resolves mystery about wind flows on Jupiter

Pluto Global Color Map

Lowell Observatory to renovate Pluto discovery telescope




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








The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2017 - Space Media Network. All websites are published in Australia and are solely subject to Australian law and governed by Fair Use principals for news reporting and research purposes. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA news 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