Astroscale hit a major milestone Wednesday, when its space junk removal demo satellite that’s currently in orbit successfully captured and released a client spacecraft using a magnetic system.
The End-of-Life Services by Astroscale-demonstration (ELSA-d) mission was launched in March, with the goal of validating the company’s orbital debris removal tech. The demonstrator package, which was sent up on a Soyuz rocket that launched from Kazakhstan, included two separate spacecraft: a “servicer” designed to remove space junk, and a “client” that poses as said space junk.
“A major challenge of debris removal, and on-orbit servicing in general, is docking with or capturing a client object; this test demonstration served as a successful validation of ELSA-d’s ability to dock with a client, such as a defunct satellite,” the company explained.
The demonstration today showed that the servicer — a model of Astroscale’s future product — can successfully magnetically capture and release other spacecraft.Continue reading… “Astroscale successfully demos in-space capture-and-release system to clear orbital debris”