Every year in near-earth orbit accumulatesmore space junk. The statistics do not provide accurate information about the mass and volume of artificial wreckage of aircraft, accumulated at an altitude of 2,000 km above the planet. According to rough estimates, it is about 300 thousand objects weighing up to 5 thousand tons. Approximately 100 thousand objects have a diameter of more than 10 mm and pose a threat to satellites and spacecraft.
Solving the problem of space debriscomes out on top, as the number of expensive satellites and manned ships continuously increases. Russia, one of the leading space countries, is actively developing systems to remove debris from orbit. The Russian Space Systems (RKS) designs to create a special orbital complex capable of “catching” satellite fragments and capturing large objects. Then dispose of the catch and use it as fuel for further work of the station.
Large objects must be "caught"special system of cables and sent to the space shredder, which is a drum-ball mill, processing waste to a powder consistency. Further, the remnants of the former satellites will be mixed with oxygen and hydrogen to convert the composition into space fuel for the maneuverable engines of the complex and to enable the next batch of space debris to be caught. The control system and the robotic mechanisms of the complex will operate on solar energy.
The creation of one such complex in RCS was rated at7.5 billion rubles. Patent applications have already been filed for the external and internal appearance of the “space scavenger”. According to the project, the development should work at an altitude of 500 to 700 kilometers above the Earth's surface.