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China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation

Published by

China Aerospace Academy of Systems Science and Engineering

ISSN 1671-0940

CN 11-4673/V


AEROSPACE CHINA ›› 2020, Vol. 21 ›› Issue (2): 16-22.doi: 10.3969/j.issn.1671-0940.2020.02.002

• Research Articles • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Analysis of the Impact of Large Constellations on the Space Debris Environment and Countermeasures


  1. 1 Beijing Institute of Spacecraft Environment Engineering, Beijing 100094
    2 National Key Laboratory of Science and Technology on Reliability and Environment Engineering, Beijing 100094
    3 China Academy of Space Technology, Beijing 100094
  • Online:2020-08-18 Published:2020-08-18
  • About author:CHEN Chuan (1988.10- ), engineer, graduated from the China Academy of space technology with a doctor’s degree in flight vehicle design. Now he is working on the active space debris removal in Beijing Institute of Spacecraft Environment Engineering, CAST.

Abstract: Large constellations have developed rapidly in recent years because of their unique advantages, but they will inevitably have a major negative impact on the space debris environment, leading to its deterioration. The key to mitigate the impact is the success rate and duration of the post-mission disposal (PMD) process. Aiming at solving this problem, this paper further studies the impact of large constellations on other space assets under different PMD strategies through simulation, and proposes corresponding strategies and suggestions for mitigation.
According to OneWeb’s large constellation launch plan, the dangerous intersection of the large constellation with existing space assets at different stages of the constellations life cycle is calculated by simulation. Based on this, the influence of the large constellation operation on existing space assets at different times and strategies of PMD is analyzed. The conclusion shows that in the PMD stage, large constellations have the greatest impact on existing space assets; the PMD duration and number of satellites performing PMD at the same time are key factors to the degree of negative impact. The faster the PMD is, the less threat it poses to other spacecraft. More results and conclusions are still being analyzed.