Russia is working on a satellite for processing debris

The problem of space debris every year becomes more acute. According to current estimates in the low-earth orbits up to altitudes of about 2000 kilometres and is up to 300 thousand man-made objects weighing up to 5 tons. According to the statistical analysis, the size of 60-100 thousand of these objects is more than 1 cm in diameter. While the exact numbers no one knows. To Land relatively safe. Typically, a small part of it burn up in the atmosphere. Large, in rare cases, the planet is still falling, but to date have not been recorded cases of the falling of the debris in residential areas. At the same all of this garbage poses a great danger to satellites, as well as for cargo and manned spacecraft, it is not surprising that many private and public organizations around the world are trying to develop a system that would make our earth a cleaner space.

For example, not so long ago we wrote about the British project RemoveDEBRIS. In the framework have been successfully tested on a small device equipped with hunting network and the harpoon, with which he can capture pieces of space debris.

To the solution of problems littered the orbit of our planet and joined Russia. “Russian space systems” (RKS) lead the development of the space complex, which capture in Earth orbit failed, the satellites (according to estimates, there are about 5000), and other large objects of space debris, but also to process them into fuel for their support.

A special system of ropes will allow space cleaner to capture and fasten objects (at the altitude from 500 to 700 kilometers above the planet’s surface) and return them in a two-roll mill grinder. Further, in the case to engage the drum-ball mill, in which the garbage will be processed to the state of fine powder.

“The apparatus consists of traps, including the network in the form of a dome and cone, and recycling systems. When the satellite falls into the trap, it passes through the stages of processing through the shredder and a mill”, — TASS quoted the words of the developer of the project, research engineer RKS Marina Berkovoy.

Chopper rubbed inside the spacecraft is then mixed with oxygen and hydrogen and turn into fuel, said the head of the project. The fuel will be used in engines for complex manoeuvres and flights to the next used satellite or another fragment of space debris. On-Board computer and robotic system control unit RKS will be powered by solar panels.

“On Board the SCM capacity of the regenerator of the water, the principle of operation is based on the reaction of Sabatier. This device by means of a membrane-electrode unit will produce an oxidizer — oxygen and fuel — hydrogen. These two substances are mixed with powder of space debris and be used as fuel for on-Board engine that will be included below as cleaning orbits of debris to raise the unit higher up to the orbits of burial of the device”, — stated on the official website of the RCC.

Currently the project is awaiting a patent. Application on the inside of the complex was filed in 2018, the external — in 2019. According to estimates of Berkovoy, the cost of creating the machine will be about 7.5 billion rubles.

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