Space debris are all man-made objects, including their fragments or parts, other than active space vehicles (or susceptible of use), larger than 10 microns and orbiting the Earth in outer space.
Since 1957 at the beginning of space conquest, humans space programs and activities produced and launched various objects to space in various sizes by the thousands. There are approximately 34,000 objects larger than 10 cm are tracked by ground-based radars or telescopes. For a long time, the main players in space-related activity considered that the immensity of space would allow objects such as upper stages, satellites at end of life, shields, bolts, etc. to be abandoned without precautions.
To date, approximately 13,000 objects larger than 10 cm (regularly tracked by sensors), 200,000 objects between 1 and 10 cm, and 35,000,000 objects between 0.1 and 1 cm. Particles smaller than 0.1 cm are obviously even more numerous. Objects smaller than 0.001 cm and larger than 0.1 cm, human-generated pollution now exceeds the natural environment due to meteorites.
The man-made space junk orbiting earth consists of operational satellites and space debris. Including operational space vehicles are defined as ‘space debris’ to enable a simple comparison between the natural environment like meteorites and the artificial environment that are all man-made objects even operational or not.
For safe aerospace operational program, risks on the ground and in orbit must be minimized. For this purpose, the number of space objects orbiting the Earth must be limited. To reduce risks in orbit, regions of interest must be protected. Earth-orbiting objects are tracked by radars and telescopes
With ever-increasing space development and space technology implementation with satellites, the number of objects in orbit will proportionally increase. The space debris object population growth, the number of launches per year (between 60 and 100, generating up to 200 objects per year), explosions in orbit, and satellite constellation and microsatellite projects. The significant volume of space debris in orbit, appropriate measures must be implemented to safeguard the future of space-related activities in orbital space environment.
There are solutions available. What are the possible solutions to eliminate space debris?
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