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Removal of Space Debris from the Low Earth Orbit using a Ground-based Multi-kJ High-Power Laser

Scharring, Stefan and Kästel, Jürgen and Riede, Wolfgang and Speiser, Jochen (2022) Removal of Space Debris from the Low Earth Orbit using a Ground-based Multi-kJ High-Power Laser. CNES Workshop on Space Debris Modeling & Remediation, 18.-20. Mai 2022, Mailand, Italien.

Full text not available from this repository.

Abstract

The concept of space debris removal from the low Earth orbit (LEO) by laser-ablative recoil is analyzed using simulations of laser-matter interaction during debris passes over a high-power laser station. Laser irradiation during the ascending part of the debris transit is used for target deceleration in order to achieve lowering of the perigee of the debris orbit. To initiate drag-induced slowdown and eventually debris removal by burn-up in the upper atmosphere, an overall velocity decrement in the order of Delta-v = 150-250 m/s is required, which can be obtained over time by debris irradiation during a multitude of station transits. Laser ablation demands for large fluences in the range of 1-10 J/cm^2 and beyond at the irradiated target. However, atmospheric constraints like laser power loss due to aerosol extinction as well as laser beam broadening as a result from atmospheric turbulence have to be considered. Therefore, the usage of adaptive optics is explored in terms of a suitable transmitter configuration in combination with a laser guide star in order to compensate for turbulence effects enabling to provide such a high energy density from ground to a distant orbital object. For the simulation of debris removal using an appropriately configured high energy laser and transmitter, virtual targets with simplified geometric shapes are employed to investigate laser-matter-interaction with rocket bodies, mission-related objects and inactive payloads. In addition to related debris data from the ESA DISCOS catalogue, the NASA Standard Breakup Model serves as a reference for fragments from collisions and explosions. For these objects, located at different altitudes in the low Earth orbit, a study on laser-ablative recoil is carried out using our code EXPEDIT for laser-matter interaction with complex target geometries. The unknown orientation of the target as well as residual laser pointing errors are addressed here by a Monte Carlo approach. The simulation results are discussed in terms of imparted momentum during laser irradiation, the resulting perigee lowering and the number of required irradiation transits for removal of the debris object. Moreover, issues of operational safety regarding laser-induced thermal effects and debris object integrity aspects are discussed.

Item URL in elib:https://elib.dlr.de/192383/
Document Type:Conference or Workshop Item (Speech)
Title:Removal of Space Debris from the Low Earth Orbit using a Ground-based Multi-kJ High-Power Laser
Authors:
AuthorsInstitution or Email of AuthorsAuthor's ORCID iDORCID Put Code
Scharring, StefanUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Kästel, JürgenUNSPECIFIEDhttps://orcid.org/0000-0001-6124-7195UNSPECIFIED
Riede, WolfgangUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Speiser, JochenUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Date:20 May 2022
Refereed publication:No
Open Access:No
Gold Open Access:No
In SCOPUS:No
In ISI Web of Science:No
Status:Published
Keywords:Space debris, debris fragments, High Energy lasers, High Power lasers, Active debris removal
Event Title:CNES Workshop on Space Debris Modeling & Remediation
Event Location:Mailand, Italien
Event Type:international Conference
Event Dates:18.-20. Mai 2022
Organizer:CNES
HGF - Research field:Aeronautics, Space and Transport
HGF - Program:Space
HGF - Program Themes:Space System Technology
DLR - Research area:Raumfahrt
DLR - Program:R SY - Space System Technology
DLR - Research theme (Project):R - Project Use of Lasers for the Detection of Space Debris
Location: Stuttgart
Institutes and Institutions:Institute of Technical Physics > Active Optical Systems
Institute of Technical Physics > Solid State Lasers and Nonlinear Optics
Deposited By: Scharring, Stefan
Deposited On:19 Dec 2022 15:05
Last Modified:19 Dec 2022 15:05

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