Space Debris: Few Solutions or No Solutions?

Posted: August 5, 2010 in Space Debris, Space Junk

Minimizing future space debris is of significant importance because there are no proven, cost-effective methods to reduce existing debris.

The ideas that appear to have the most merit, like GOLD, have narrow solution-sets, like being constrained to low earth orbit or mitigating future debris.

I hate to be a defeatist, but pending a breakthrough in propulsion, I don’t envision much progress in de-cluttering space.

This piece from is quite excellent in identifying the challenges, which may include a less-dense upper atmosphere.

A less-dense upper atmosphere–although thought to be the same as it was in the late 1960s–might mean slower (by some small amount) deorbits and burn-in.


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