Clark School
This Site umd.edu

News Story

New deal will help protect Europe's satellites from space debris

New deal will help protect Europe's satellites from space debris

US warning centre. Image credit: US Air Force photo Airman 1st Class Antoinette Lyons
US warning centre. Image credit: US Air Force photo Airman 1st Class Antoinette Lyons

Sen—The European Space Agency (ESA) has signed an agreement with the US Strategic Command to improve communications between the two organisations and so reduce the threat of collisions with space junk.

It means the American defence organisation will supply more detailed information more quickly to ESA which will assist the agency in planning launches and early orbit operations, as well as avoiding debris. ESA will receive the higher quality and more timely and cusomisable space information tailored to its needs in exchange for sharing more accurate positional information about its own satellites.

Engineers at ESA’s Space Operations Centre (ESOC) in Darmstadt, Germany, currently control five satellites in low orbits and expect six more to join them in the next few years. Improved collision warnings mean ESA controllers can take more efficient evasive action when its Earth observation satellites are threatened by space junk. ESA have already been receiving US data and predictions on possible ‘conjunctions’ for some time, but could not request customised data. Under the new arrangement, ESA can request specific surveillance information and receive it in a timely manner.

See More ...

November 3, 2014


Prev   Next

Current Headlines

RemoveDebris: UK satellite nets 'space junk'

The quest to conquer Earth’s space junk problem

Aerospace Corp. proposes smallsat GPS transponder for improved space traffic management

OPINION: Filling the Gaps in Space Traffic Management

Inside the high-stakes business of tracking space junk

ISS leak highlights concerns about orbital debris and station operations

Why Satellite Internet Is the New Space Race

LeoLabs: Mapping Space The Way It Needs To Be Done

News Resources

Return to Newsroom

Search News

Archived News

Events Resources

Events Calendar

Additional Resources

UM Newsdesk

Faculty Experts