Cool Satellite Rescue

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Rob Lister
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Title: Incipient toppler
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Cool Satellite Rescue

Post by Rob Lister »

Cool accomplishment
For the first time ever, a robotic spacecraft caught an old satellite and extended its life
  • A small spacecraft built by Northrop Grumman succeeded in docking with Intelsat’s IS-901 satellite and returning it to service for another five years.
  • The feat is a space industry first, as extending the life of spacecraft already in orbit has only been done with human help before.
  • “Intelsat is proud to have pioneered this innovative first with Northrop Grumman,” the company’s chief services officer Mike DeMarco said in a statement.
Intelsat’s IS-901 satellite is nearly 20 years old, and well beyond its expected lifespan, but a small spacecraft built by Northrop Grumman succeeded in docking with the satellite and giving it another five years of service, the companies announced on Friday.
...
Intelsat’s satellite was launched in June 2001 and was only intended to serve for 13 years, providing communications services in the Atlantic Ocean region.

The satellite is in a fixed position above the Earth in what is known as geosynchronous orbittens of thousands of miles up to provide as wide a coverage area as effectively possible.
https://www.cnbc.com/2020/04/17/northro ... llite.html

[pedantic]
should be geostationary
should be 22,236 miles
that's not why.
[/pedantic]

I personally think this might be penny wise and pound foolish. A new satellite would quintuple the capability and longevity at [likely] not much more cost. Then again, SpaceX StarLink my buggywhip it in five years, so maybe not.

Regardless, pretty fucking cool.

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Rob Lister
Posts: 22392
Joined: Sun Jul 18, 2004 7:15 pm
Title: Incipient toppler
Location: Swimming in Lake Ed

Re: Cool Satellite Rescue

Post by Rob Lister »

A Must Watch unless you're 'technically' dead. An animation showing not only how they did it (will do it from the video's perspective) but what else they have up their delightfully engineered sleeves.


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Witness
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Re: Cool Satellite Rescue

Post by Witness »

A small first step to mining the asteroid belt. :)

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Abdul Alhazred
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Re: Cool Satellite Rescue

Post by Abdul Alhazred »

Did somebody say asteroid? 8)

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