UK Space Agency Aims to Study Near-Earth Environment and Tackle Space Debris

23rd Sep 2021

Researchers at the University of Warwick hope to tackle the ever-growing issue of space debris filling low Earth orbit. In conjunction with DSTL (Defence Science and Technology Laboratory) and UKSA, the University has created a new UK space agency to help focus on these problems and develop innovative solutions. This UK space agency, known as the Centre for Space Domain Awareness, will focus on studying the near-Earth environment and the impact of space debris on human missions to space.

New UK Space Agency Hopes to Rid Low-Earth Orbit of Space Debris

Space junk is a huge problem for a variety of reasons. Since humans began to explore space, around 6,000 satellites and objects have been sent to low Earth orbit. As these objects rotate and begin to disintegrate, small pieces break off and create more pieces of micro space junk. This creates problems for both future space missions and for active satellites in orbit. Satellites are responsible for many of our major technological systems on Earth, such as widespread internet access, GPS, and weather prediction tools. The new UK space agency developed at Warwick aims to help find solutions to the problem of space debris and study the dangers it poses to space missions.

UK Space Centre to Study Near-Earth Environment

Part of the aim of the new UK space agency set up by the University of Warwick is to study the environment of low Earth orbit. Although a great deal of space travel and satellite operations occur in this near-Earth region, the environment is still not thoroughly understood. Researchers at the new space center will not only be looking at the dangers of space debris but also studying the impact of solar winds on satellite technology. This will help researchers develop space technology for future missions, which is better adapted to suit conditions in space. The new UK space agency was officially launched on 8th September 2021, and is supported by the GNOSIS organization (Global Network on Sustainability in Space). Though space junk removal is one of the significant goals, it seems like the agency will add a lot to future space exploration.

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