SPACE SURVEILLANCE

EOS employs sophisticated satellite laser ranging technologies to carry out surveillance of space assets. Our Australian designs include high accuracy beam director telescopes, laser systems, imaging systems and pico-second time interval systems. We develop and integrate fully autonomous software control for space sensor networks and provide space situational awareness, object characterisation, space object cataloging, high accuracy orbit determination and orbital projection, and conjunction assessments.

EOS, Electro Optic Systems, Space Surveillance Australia

EOS SPACE SYSTEMS SURVEILLANCE

EOS, Electro Optic Systems, Defence and Space Technology Company

Space Debris

Space debris, or near earth object (NEO) pollution, is an enormous hazard to deployed satellites and spacecraft which cross the path of the orbiting debris. Using high powered ‘eye safe’ space laser systems we can track and catalogue the most potentially damaging pieces of debris. Once the debris is tracked it can be avoided. Our proprietary laser tracking and astrometric techniques reduce conjunction volumes’ error budgets by a factor of 100-1000 (ref AMOS 2013).

Space Ablation

Ablation is the process of generating forces on objects by means of surface interactions with energy projected from a distant point. Laser beams, directed from earth to intersect with objects in space, generate significant forces if the interaction is carefully controlled.

Until now, the only way to avoid space debris was to manoeuvre away from it to prevent a collision, consuming fuel and reducing mission life. EOS is now fine-tuning technology that will allow pieces of space debris and other objects in space to be physically manoeuvred into a different orbit using long range high power plasma beam (ablation).

By using Adaptive Optics (AO) techniques, EOSSS is developing new tools for enhanced capability for low earth orbit (LEO) space management using coupled laser energy to space debris objects.  Laser guide stars, wavefront sensors and wavefront inversion tools are in development now to improve ground based imaging and to couple laser energy onto debris for orbital management of lighter debris approaching valuable assets.

The video shows a Mount Stromlo laser tracking system with the tracking beam marked in red.  Moving away from earth we see the dense space debris field below 1,000km altitude, and then the sparser debris beyond that distance.  A green crescent shows the object we are tracking and the length of our programmed track of this object.  Any objects coming close to our tracking beam are identified by the code names in green, such that we can turn off the laser if any of them are not space debris, or if our international partners ask us to avoid illuminating certain objects.

A ring of satellites becomes visible at 36,000km altitude, as this is the only orbital ring where satellites can stay above one place on the surface.  Finally we zoom back in and take a quick trip around the planet, where the dark side makes all objects invisible briefly because the sun illuminates the other side.

RESEARCH PAPER LINKS

EOS, Electro Optic Systems, Defence and Space Technology Company
Contact Electro Optic Systems for more information