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End of Life Operations for LEO and GEO Satellites: 30 Years of Continuous Improvement

Fremeaux, Claire 1, Moussi, Aurelie 1, Vintenat, Lionel 1, Moulin, Michel1
Affiliation data not available1

Document details

Publishing year2013 PublisherESA Publishing typeConference Name of conference6th European Conference on Space Debris
Pagesn/a Volume
L. Ouwehand


CNES is celebrating in 2013 its 40th year of satellites operations with nearly 40 satellites cared for from Symphony 1 (1973) to Pleiades 1B (2012). Half of them reached its end of mission. Although they were not designed for it, CNES imagined, prepared and executed end-of life operations for geostationary and low earth orbit satellites, in accordance with its strong involvement at international level in favour of space activity sustainability and space debris mitigation. With increasing experience, efficiency and completeness of operations have strongly improved: optimization of resources, precise orbit and eccentricity management, collision risk concern, controlled fluidic and electric passivation, concern for degraded or emergency cases... This paper presents the evolution and improvement of end of life operations handled by CNES for 30 years, with a highlight on the last evolutions in the whole process since the French Space Act came into force.