Cheap Astronomy - Dear CA Ep. 49: Space Junk Part 2


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More of this rubbish...

Dear Cheap Astronomy – Oh, come on, is that really the whole space junk story?

Cheap Astronomy recently covered some questions on space junk – concluding there’s there so much stuff up there at all different altitudes and different trajectories that any plans for chase-and-grab solutions or passive-net solutions might work on a small scale, but aren’t likely to make any serious dent in the current global problem.

Dear Cheap Astronomy – Could electrodynamic tethers solve the space junk problem and even provide cheap propulsion?

Imagine you dangle a tether, which is essentially a long wire, from a satellite. The whole system is in orbit around Earth and angular momentum is always conserved, but the end of the tether at high altitude will experience less gravitational pull than the end of the tether at low altitude.

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