Americans will clear the Earth’s orbit from debris

On April 2, the SpaceX Dragon truck, in addition to 2,6 tons of cargo intended for the ISS, delivered into orbit a prototype of a space debris cleaner developed by British engineers. Many organizations from different countries are working on the creation of such devices, one of them is the Space Center of the University of Surrey, whose device was sent into orbit.

The problem of space debris clogging the orbit becomes more acute every year. The earth is surrounded by thousands of satellites and hundreds of thousands of debris and pieces of garbage of various sizes, from small to quite impressive. Mankind began space exploration only half a century ago, but during this time it has already managed to prettyly clog near-Earth space. While the situation is not critical, but if you do not start to solve it, then in the near future we risk getting Kessler's Syndrome and completely losing the near space.

The device received the simple name RemoveDEBRIS ("remove debris") and this is exactly what it will do in the next few weeks as a test of its capabilities. So far, it is not obvious to scientists which of the orbital cleaning methods will be the most successful, therefore the space scavenger is equipped with several at once. The device is equipped with a network and a harpoon, and as targets it will be served by several miniature nano-satellites - cubsats. After completing its mission, RemoveDEBRIS will slow down with a sail, begin to fall to the surface of the planet, and burn in the atmosphere. If the experiment is successful, then in future missions, a full-fledged cleaning of our orbit will begin.