Space debris is already considered hugea problem that prevents humanity from conducting tests in near-earth orbit. The cause of the huge amount of debris are batteries, which are used in satellites and can explode due to high voltage, mechanical damage and other factors. According to the data of the European Space Agency ESA, about 250 satellite explosions have already occurred in the history, fragments of which are still flying around the Earth.
The details of the blown-up vehicles move with immensespeed, and may damage the design of other satellites. Because of this risk, the ESA researchers decided to find out why the batteries exploded and to find solutions to the problem. Hazardous factors were identified during the course of 200 tests, during which various types of batteries were subjected to various impacts that could lead to their explosion.
Some of these batteries were new, andthe other part was repeatedly recharged to mimic aging. The test was carried out in vacuum space: the researchers provoked a short circuit, overheating, and even simulated the impact of space objects. The speed of space debris reaches crazy 20 km / s, so scientists could not exactly mimic the collision. Instead, they “fired” at the batteries not with 0.8 millimeter debris, but with larger particles with a diameter of 8 mm. As a result, they got almost identical power of the collision.
Tests made the ESA understand how to reduceminimizing battery explosions from decommissioned satellites. It turned out that it is important for space agencies to completely discharge the power sources of old vehicles and disconnect the solar panels. Also, the design of the satellites should be designed so that the elements retain a strictly defined temperature.
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