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SMA valves to prevent in-orbit explosions

Shape Memory Alloy valves can be used in space for reducing the risks of spacecraft break-ups. ESA is investigating in SMA valves that could be activated at the end of the missions to vent all the remaining...

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System approach and its use in Clean Space

It might sound very ambitious to design technologies that will allow satellites to take care of their end-of-life and to reduce the environmental impact of space missions. But here at Clean Space, we feel that we can...

A space for debris

Anyone concerned with the challenge of space debris came together at ESA’s ESOC mission control centre in Darmstadt, Germany, last month. Several topics dealt with Clean Space activities

Regulating space activities in a safe and sustainable m...

Nowadays, the seriousness of the space debris problem is pretty well recognised internationally. Space system designers, operators, policy makers, as well as astronauts, share the view that common rules are essential to regulate space activities in a...

How do materials behave during atmospheric re-entry?

Since March 2014, all ESA satellites and launcher upper stages which will be disposed of by atmospheric re-entry at the end of their operational life must demonstrate that the risk from fragments surviving the re-entry and causing...

Modelling a satellite’s fiery fall to Earth

Atmospheric re-entry of satellites is a destructive and difficult to predict process, as the satellite body breaks up into various segments which are scattered and subject to aerothermal heating. There are many uncertainties involved – not only...

Clean Space working with Earth Observation mission desi...

Sharing is caring: that goes for the space industry too – especially when it comes to tackling the common problem of orbit debris. Working on innovative solutions to make future satellites compliant with space debris mitigation, ESA’s...

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Thomas Pesquet features in space debris video

On Friday 13 January 2017, Thomas Pesquet – the French astronaut currently flying over our heads in the International Space Station – performed a successful spacewalk. If you followed the resulting comments and questions on social media,...