Space Debris Measurement Using Joint Mid-Latitude and Equatorial Optical Observations
Piergentili, F. ; Ceruti, A. ; Rizzitelli, F. ;... Battagliere M.L. ;
Jan - 2014
DOI: 10.1109/TAES.2013.120272
ISSN : 0018-9251 ;
journal : Aerospace and Electronic Systems, IEEE Transactions
type: Article Journal

A system for orbital object monitoring is analyzed, based on a mid-latitude and an equatorial observatory. The enhancements with respect to the use of a single telescope located at mid-latitude, for space debris detection and tracking are highlighted in terms of surveying volume, object identification, and orbital determination accuracy. The need to improve observation capabilities in monitoring and cataloguing such kinds of objects is constantly growing, due to the constant increase of operative satellites and space debris in both geostationary Earth orbit (GEO) and low Earth orbit (LEO) regions. After the considerations on the feasibility of the whole system, an overview of the observatories' design is sketched, on the basis of previous Italian experience in space debris observation, and taking into account constraints imposed by the instrumentation. In particular the main characteristics of components, software for image analysis and observation methodologies are analyzed and a possible configuration is given, based on the ALMASCOPE observatory realized by the Space Robotics Group at the University of Bologna. This observatory was used for the 2010 test campaign carried out from the Broglio Space Center in Kenya.

keywords :