Every year more satellites are being launched into space, and with the commercial space sector rapidly growing in the past few years, the number of man made objects orbiting in space is only expected to grow. Naturally, wherever humans venture into, the same challenge appears after a while: sustainability.
Problem Statement: As with the world’s limited resources, we need to ensure that future generations can continue to use and maintain resources for space.
Scope for Innovation: Recently, with the launch of the first Space Sustainability Rating (SSR), we ensure the sustainability of space missions by scoring them on data sharing, choice of orbit, measures taken to avoid collisions, and plans to de-orbit. While holding new space missions to a standard is an effective and necessary step, solutions are needed to deal with what has already been done, naming space debris.
Solution of the Week: Altius Space Machines was founded in 2010 to support sustainable space and provide cost-effective and reliable satellite servicing. From inspection and repairs to upgrades and de-orbiting, they ensure that spaceflight actors have access to on-orbiting services. On top of providing de-orbiting services which address space debris directly, they offer servicing to extend the lifetime of satellites to facilitate and support more sustainable space missions.