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12 December 2023 — 1 minutes read

PhDAER Seminar
Tuesday, December 12, 2023 at 16:15 - Politecnico di Milano, Classroom B8.2.1, Campus Bovisa, Via Candiani, 72, Milano (MI)

The RemoveDebris mission was the first successful in-orbit demonstration of two technologies for the capture or large space debris, namely a net and a harpoon. The net was used to capture a CubeSat that was previously released from the mothercraft to be the test target for this method of capture.The harpoon was tested against a target made of material representative of old satellite structures, and fixed at the end of a deployable boom.

Both technologies were successfully demonstrated, and extended videos that captured the in-orbit experiments were recorded and downloaded. In addition, the mothercraft also released a second cubesat that enabled verification of the functionality of a lidar camera on board the mothercraft, and related software.

The last step to complete the mission was to deorbit the mothercraft by deploying a dragsail.

The talk will describe the development and execution of the mission, including some lesson learned.

Prof. Guglielmo Aglietti, Director of the Space Institute, University of Auckland, NZ

Short bio: Professor G. Aglietti is an internationally leading expert in space engineering. His career started in Industry working at the Columbus module of the international space station. He then worked at the European Space Agency and subsequently moved to the UK where his work spanned from academic research & teaching to consultancy for industry, covering both theoretical work and experimental activities. Awarded the Royal Academy of Engineering Research Chair in Space Engineering, became Director of the Surrey Space Centre. Principal investigator of pioneering missions for technology demonstrations like active removal of space debris, his work has been presented at leading international conferences, giving keynote lectures and featured on various media outlets and is described in over 300 publications.

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