It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.

Please white-list or disable in your ad-blocking tool.

Thank you.


Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.


Solar sails could clean up space junk- Interesting Concept

page: 1

log in


posted on Apr, 28 2010 @ 08:26 PM

"Protecting our planet and environment is key for sustainable growth,"

This still from a University of Surrey depicts the CubeSail satellite using a solar sail to fly through space around Earth.

Future satellites could deploy solar sails to help take down pieces of space junk floating around Earth and a tiny new spacecraft hopes to make it possible.

A British satellite the size of a shoe box is slated to launch next year to test how a solar sail can act as an atmospheric brake and end its mission in a fiery plunge. If successful, the one-year mission could help lead to bigger, better solar sail spacecraft capable of trawling the space around Earth for dangerous space junk, mission planners said.

Most satellites rely upon propellant-based maneuvering thrusters that may or may not still function at mission's end — and that's not even considering the launch expense of carrying all that propellant mass. By contrast, the CubeSail would simply unfurl a 16-square-foot (5-square-meter) sail. Launch of the 6.6-pound (3-kg) sail is set for late 2011.

I know you are probably thinking the same thing I WAS. NO WAY this could work but, after reading the whole article, I sure hope it works and it could change Space Exploration as we now know it. Someone was thinking.... Enjoy

new topics

log in