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Digantara and OrbAstro announce service agreement for space debris tracking mission on 6U satellite
by Staff Writers
London, UK (SPX) Nov 09, 2021

File illustration of the proposed ORB-6 satellite platform.

Digantara Research and Technologies has signed a contract with Orbital Astronautics Ltd to fly its SCOT (Space-based space Climate and Object Tracker) payload onboard an ORB-6 satellite platform launching towards the end of 2022.

The mission will focus on demonstration of a novel LiDAR-based technology developed by Digantara, and will serve as the pilot for their LEO constellation providing a space situational awareness service.

"With the rapid growth of satellite applications and the influx of mega constellations, situational awareness of 1.0 - 10.0 cm objects, in addition to objects larger than 10 cm, is becoming increasingly important. With 96% of potentially hazardous objects still untracked, comprehensive situational awareness is required to operate assets in LEO effectively. Solving such intricate problems requires real-time insights" said Anirudh Sharma, CEO of Digantara.

"Digantara's mission is to build a sustainable near-Earth environment and access to space by providing actionable insights through meaningful collaborations with industry stakeholders. Cooperation with companies such as OrbAstro play an important role in accelerating Digantara's objectives."

"Through its own satellite constellation, Digantara is working towards providing a service that constellation operators, space agencies, and regulators are screaming for. By far the most effective solution to a sustainable LEO environment will be comprehensive space traffic management. This will not be possible without companies like Digantara enriching datasets on traffic.", said Dr Ash Dove-Jay, CEO of OrbAstro.

"Over the coming years, to enable the space traffic management aspect of our Guardian Network service, we are going to become reliant on partnerships with companies like Digantara."

Beyond being a space-as-a-service provider geared towards nanosatellite and microsatellite constellations, OrbAstro is building an infrastructure to better service customer satellites, the Guardian Network.

The Guardian Network provides low-latency access to customer satellites through an in-orbit data relay network, and it provides a high level of operations automation at the level of the satellite, mission, constellation, and space traffic management.

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Georgia State University astronomy researcher wins grant to improve detection, monitoring of satellites
Atlanta GA (SPX) Nov 05, 2021
The U.S. Air Force has awarded Georgia State University astronomy professor Stuart Jefferies a grant of nearly a million dollars to develop a technique to detect and characterize satellites in greater detail than ever before. The new technique could have implications for astronomers trying to spot small, dim objects hidden in the light of companions, and could assist the government in monitoring space junk that can pose a threat to U.S. satellites as well as keeping an eye on foreign satellites. ... read more

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