SAMARA, November 30. /TASS/. Scientists from Samara National Research University have developed a technology to carry out a mission for removing space debris from the orbit and described it in their book titled "Attitude Dynamics and Control of Space Debris During Ion Beam Transportation," released by the Elsevier publishing house in November, Alexander Ledkov, a co-author of the book together with Vladimir Aslanov, told TASS on Wednesday.
"Our practical guide presents in detail a method of contactless debris removal in orbit using an automatic sweeping spacecraft equipped with ion engines. Such engines are widely used in modern space exploration," Ledkov said. "A sweeping spacecraft, having approached the selected item of debris at a distance of about ten meters, will direct the ionic engine jet, the so-called ‘plasma flare,’ against it. When colliding with the space garbage surface, ion jet particles will generate a force that will be used to move debris in the required direction," the researcher said.
In the book, the scientists provide an overview of research on non-contact space debris removal. The authors describe how to independently develop mathematical models and computer simulations of a transport system, demonstrate characteristics of space debris oscillations within the ionic flow and offer different laws and designs of a space ‘sweeper’ control.