Debris Attitude Motion Measurements and Modelling by Combining Different Observation Techniques

Silha, Jiri; Schildknecht, Thomas; Pittet, Jean-Noël; Kirchner, G.; Steindorfer, M.; Kucharski, D.; Cerutti-Maori, D.; Rosebrock, J.; Sommer, S.; Leushacke, L.; Kärräng, P.; Kanzler, R.; Krag, H. (April 2017). Debris Attitude Motion Measurements and Modelling by Combining Different Observation Techniques. In: 7th European Conference on Space Debris. Darmstadt, Germany. 18 - 21 April 2017.

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This work will discuss an ESA project “Debris Attitude Motion Measurements and Modeling” (ESA AO/1-7803/14/D/SR) dedicated to the attitude determination of large spacecraft and upper stages. Two major goals are defined for this project. First, the determination of the attitude motion vector in case of a contingency situation, when a short response time is required between the observations themselves and the attitude determination. The second goal is the long term prediction (e.g. 10 years) of the spin rate of selected targets for future potential Active Debris Removal (ADR) missions. The study should in particular fuse the results from passive optical, laser ranging and radar observations. We will discuss a highly modular software tool named ιOTA (In-Orbit Tumbling Analysis) which was
developed during the presented activity. This tool performs short- (days) to long-term (years) propagations of the orbit and the attitude motion of spacecraft in
Earth orbit and furthermore its post-processing modules will generate synthetic measurements, i.e. light curves, satellite laser ranging (SLR) residuals and synthetic
radar images. Last but not least we will present results from a collaborative campaign when four priority targets have been selected for collaborative measurements with radar, SLR and light curves in order to test and validate the ΙOTA tool.

Item Type:

Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)


08 Faculty of Science > Institute of Astronomy

UniBE Contributor:

Silha, Jiri; Schildknecht, Thomas and Pittet, Jean-Noël


500 Science > 520 Astronomy




Alessandro Vananti

Date Deposited:

08 Dec 2017 15:05

Last Modified:

11 Feb 2019 13:01

Additional Information:

The same paper was published on the Journal of the British Interplanetary Society but will be also published in the proceedings of the 7th European Conference on Space Debris.




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