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Catalogue Correlation of Space Debris Objects

Fruh, Carolin 1, Schildknecht, Thomas 1, Musci, Reto 1, Ploner, Martin1
Affiliation data not available1

Document details

Publishing year2009 PublisherESA Publishing typeConference Name of conference5th European Conference on Space Debris
Pagesn/a Volume
H. Lacoste


One important step when performing surveys of space debris objects is to correlate each actual detection of an object with one or several catalogues of known objects. Usually the output of optical surveys is a short series of astrometric positions for each detection, also called a tracklet, spanning an interval of a few minutes. Single tracklets do not allow to determine a six parameter orbit.This paper describes a new method to correlate observed space debris objects with internal and external catalogues by comparing the observed and the computed topocentric positions and velocities. Since official catalogues like DISCOS do not provide covariance information, the catalogue errors have been assessed by comparing observed and the computed positions and velocities of a set of known objects.The new correlation method is applied to typical GEO and GTO survey observations from the ESA Space Debris Telescope (ESASDT) on Tenerife. In addition first results of the application of the method to the surveys of the ZimSMART wide field telescope in Zimmerwald, Switzerland, are presented.