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NASA has a very simple idea for cleaning up space, all you have to do is think about it

NASA has a very simple idea for cleaning up space, all you have to do is think about it

TransAstra has won a NASA contract to develop a space debris recovery system. The idea chosen was basically simple, but it was necessary to get it right.

Credit: 123RF

Space is trash. The formula may seem exaggerated, but… Thousands of satellites in orbit All over the Earth, incl More than half are no longer working According to a 2020 study, The presence of a large amount of debris is undeniable. And this is without counting Rocket tips where is the Asteroid pieces Rotating aimlessly in the vacuum of space. Cleaning everything is essential. Therefore, NASA launched a call for projects for Develop a debris recovery system. the society Trans Astra It won the contract with a simple but theoretically very effective concept.

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When you want to get rid of waste, what do you do? You can throw it in the trash. There is the same: TransAstra to create space trash bags to corral debris. The capsule will take on an approximately spherical shape Its opening/closing will be ensured by supportsA type of shock absorber. The goal is Collect a lot of waste at one time To maximize the profitability of the capsule to be built in different sizes.

NASA wants to use garbage bags to collect debris in space

The advantages of such a system are numerous for Joel Sercel, founder and CEO of TransAstra: “The target doesn’t have to have something you can hold onto. It doesn’t require docking, and it’s a precise maneuver. You have to be very precise to open the bag and pass it.” [du débris] And close the bag.” Some adjustments will be necessary depending on the situation. For example, If the target is rotating, the capsule should be in line with the rotation.

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Space trash can concept for collecting debris / Credits: TransAstra

The goal then isDeliver the filled bag to the orbital processing station. TransAstra plans to partner with Thinkorbital. The company will manufacture a Platform with a diameter of 37 meters and 4000 cubic meters Of size. EquippedTools for analysis, repair or recycling Debris, the idea isfuel saving By avoiding having to dispose of waste on the ground, especially Reuse as many components as possible.

According to a study by TransAstra and ThinkOrbital, this will be expensive 6 times cheaper Instead of getting closer to the Earth’s atmosphere so the debris can be recovered from the ground. Fuel saving will be 82%while reducing 40% of the time required to dispose of waste. First, TransAstra will build a prototype that will be tested on the ground to prove its effectiveness. Maybe one day your trash bag will collect something with your name on it from space?

source : Space news