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LEO constellations - Quo vadis after end-of-mission?

Hörl, Kay-uwe 1, John, Rüdiger 1, Sarrocco, Claudia1
Affiliation data not available1

Document details

Publishing year2001 PublisherESA Publishing typeConference Name of conference3rd European Conference on Space Debris
Pagesn/a Volume
H. Lacoste


Constellations in low-Earth orbit (LEO) will increase the number of debris objects if they are not removed from their orbit after end of mission. This paper addresses two issues: the technical aspects dealing with the collision risk during de-orbiting (calculated with the MASTER model) and the political and legal aspects covering the liability question. Prerequisites for a code of conduct are outlined that could be agreed upon internationally to encourage spacecraft operators to de-orbit their spacecraft. If such measures were to be taken, a mass accumulation could be prevented at disposal orbits above 2000 km, thus preserving these regions useful for future generations.