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(BBC)   British engineers design space harpoon. FROM HELL'S HEART, I STAB AT THEE   (bbc.co.uk) divider line 60
    More: Interesting, multistage rockets, Space weapon, kilometres per second, Earth observation  
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9447 clicks; posted to Main » on 04 Oct 2012 at 5:14 AM (2 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-10-04 01:29:23 AM  
i1079.photobucket.com
 
2012-10-04 01:44:45 AM  
media.tumblr.com
 
2012-10-04 04:03:09 AM  
The pictures in the article make it look stupid, but it may have some merit. However, the harpoon has to get within 60 feet of the satellite, which is going to cost as much as getting the damn satellite into space in the first place.

It's not a very creative solution for getting old space junk back down to earth. It's an expensive one.
 
2012-10-04 05:07:25 AM  
Perhaps, Lsherm, one satellite hunter-killer could be launched that can carry a multitude of harpoons.
 
2012-10-04 05:19:14 AM  
It's raining tin, Hallelujah!
 
2012-10-04 05:22:26 AM  
Mandate all satellites to have thrusters which push their ass back into atmosphere once their job is done. Clean up the malfunctioning ones and older ones manually.
 
2012-10-04 05:29:55 AM  
Put ONE 3D printer in orbit and have it print out new satellites as needed. 3D printers will be like Star Trek replicators in less than ten years. Just get lunar He-3 to power a nanofusion reactor and there you go. All solved. Next?
 
2012-10-04 05:34:53 AM  

RobertBruce: [media.tumblr.com image 500x323]


//thread
 
2012-10-04 05:35:19 AM  

ani23: Mandate all satellites to have thrusters which push their ass back into atmosphere once their job is done. Clean up the malfunctioning ones and older ones manually.


i128.photobucket.com

Manually?
 
2012-10-04 05:39:08 AM  
Once the harpoon is hooked through the skin of the rogue satellite or rocket stage, the chaser could either pull on a trailing polymer cord itself ...

imageshack.us
 
2012-10-04 05:52:30 AM  
I thought I remember once seeing a list of all man made objects that were known to be in orbit, including things that were not intended to be satellites (such as wayward objects that have escaped the space shuttle). Wish I could find that site.
 
2012-10-04 05:58:03 AM  
They'll need it.
i531.photobucket.com
 
2012-10-04 06:33:47 AM  
The skin of satellites is notoriously thin, I'd wonder if a hook could find enough purchase to really do the job.

For the task at hand, sending a ship up to chase down each individual sat probably isn't cost effective anyway.
The plans for deorbiting with ground based lasers seemed more realistic.

/Altho I wonder why they don't just shoot a suborbital rocket into the path of the trash and explode a cloud of water vapor or something.
/A gentle nudge once or twice at apogee should be enough to bring the low orbit stuff down.
 
2012-10-04 06:42:30 AM  
www.stardestroyer.net

Something something
 
2012-10-04 07:22:02 AM  
Why bother? Ayanami will just get it stuck in the moon anyway.

wiki.evageeks.org
 
2012-10-04 07:22:12 AM  

herrDrFarkenstein: [www.stardestroyer.net image 640x274]

Something something


Yeah, well you know that "Wrath of Khan" is Moby Dick set in space, and from the viewpoint of the whale, right?
 
2012-10-04 07:49:19 AM  
1heckofaguy.com

Really does not approve

/Leaf on the wind
 
2012-10-04 07:53:34 AM  

dittybopper: Yeah, well you know that "Wrath of Khan" is Moby Dick set in space, and from the viewpoint of the whale, right?


The whale in question:

1.bp.blogspot.com
 
2012-10-04 07:54:53 AM  
www.fas.org
 
2012-10-04 07:58:43 AM  
i372.photobucket.com
"Space harpoon"? I already got one.


www.ridgenet.net
So do I!
 
2012-10-04 08:35:35 AM  
Shouldn't they recycle?

2.bp.blogspot.com
 
2012-10-04 08:42:03 AM  
 
2012-10-04 08:45:35 AM  
In other news, Rosie McDonnell enters witness protection from 4chan.
 
2012-10-04 09:00:40 AM  
This is good, the technology can now develop to the point that Angron will have Ursus Claws available for his battlebarge. World Eaters FTW.
 
2012-10-04 09:09:09 AM  

Fapinator: dittybopper: Yeah, well you know that "Wrath of Khan" is Moby Dick set in space, and from the viewpoint of the whale, right?

The whale in question:

[1.bp.blogspot.com image 357x298]


Precisely.
 
2012-10-04 09:17:39 AM  

Quantum Apostrophe: Put ONE 3D printer in orbit and have it print out new satellites as needed. 3D printers will be like Star Trek replicators in less than ten years. Just get lunar He-3 to power a nanofusion reactor and there you go. All solved. Next?


No no, we'll all just take our immortality pills and wait for the satellites to fall down by themselves.
 
2012-10-04 09:19:26 AM  
I wonder if there's an entire chapter in the manual describing what color it is...
 
2012-10-04 09:39:09 AM  
Mmmm...space poon. Tastes like Tang!
 
2012-10-04 09:55:14 AM  
I think what we're overlooking here is how much of a colossal dick China was to blow up one of their satellites just because 'they could'.

/you made this mess, you clean it up!
//well aware that we made a mess too
///buried alive
////buried alive!
 
2012-10-04 09:55:55 AM  
Junk collectors in space? Japan already did it...

upload.wikimedia.org 

/actually not a bad show and they tried to make it as much hard science fiction as they could
 
2012-10-04 10:02:12 AM  
So, you harpoon a satellite, and you start pulling on the rope....then what?
3.bp.blogspot.com

/I think it involves a *thwack* sound.
 
2012-10-04 10:22:05 AM  
ztfnews.files.wordpress.com
 
2012-10-04 10:55:08 AM  
How about sending up a space garbage truck? Something with a big bay and a trash compaction system. It could just orbit around and as it passes junk, it collects it with a Canada arm, puts in the compactor, crushes it, rinse/repeat.

Could be unmanned, controlled from the ground using video cameras to see the objects, etc.

That space harpoon idea is dumb as hell.
 
2012-10-04 11:19:15 AM  

PhiloeBedoe: [i1079.photobucket.com image 470x320]


We're whalers on the moon
We carry a harpoon
But there ain't no whales
So we tell tall tales
And sing our whaling tune
 
2012-10-04 11:24:03 AM  

PallMall: How about sending up a space garbage truck? Something with a big bay and a trash compaction system. It could just orbit around and as it passes junk, it collects it with a Canada arm, puts in the compactor, crushes it, rinse/repeat.

Could be unmanned, controlled from the ground using video cameras to see the objects, etc.

That space harpoon idea is dumb as hell.


A giant arm is very difficult to control. And if you grab something wrong, you run the risk of becoming space junk yourself. A harpoon to pull something out of a stable orbit, to burn up in the atmosphere, is a far simpler and cheaper solution.
 
2012-10-04 11:33:13 AM  

HailRobonia: A giant arm is very difficult to control. And if you grab something wrong, you run the risk of becoming space junk yourself. A harpoon to pull something out of a stable orbit, to burn up in the atmosphere, is a far simpler and cheaper solution.


The Canadarm was used successfully throughout the entire space shuttle program. To say it wouldn't work is ridiculous considering.. IT GRABS STUFF IN SPACE!!
 
2012-10-04 12:07:11 PM  
Thread over in one
 
2012-10-04 12:12:07 PM  
www.freewebs.com 

From TFA:
"The harpoon would be fired at the hapless satellite alien from close range. "
 
2012-10-04 12:17:40 PM  

PallMall: How about sending up a space garbage truck? Something with a big bay and a trash compaction system. It could just orbit around and as it passes junk, it collects it with a Canada arm, puts in the compactor, crushes it, rinse/repeat.

Could be unmanned, controlled from the ground using video cameras to see the objects, etc.

That space harpoon idea is dumb as hell.


You literally have no idea how orbits work right? Because based on what you just said, the only other option is that you are trolling. And not like QA style trolling, because he actually makes very valid points.
 
2012-10-04 12:46:48 PM  

threadjackistan: PallMall: How about sending up a space garbage truck? Something with a big bay and a trash compaction system. It could just orbit around and as it passes junk, it collects it with a Canada arm, puts in the compactor, crushes it, rinse/repeat.

Could be unmanned, controlled from the ground using video cameras to see the objects, etc.

That space harpoon idea is dumb as hell.

You literally have no idea how orbits work right? Because based on what you just said, the only other option is that you are trolling. And not like QA style trolling, because he actually makes very valid points.


Yes, I understand how orbits work. I also understand that many space missions have synced orbit with various objects in space (Satellites, ISS, Hubble, etc) to work on them. That included using the Canadarm to reach out and grab stuff.

Doing the same with an unmanned craft makes plenty of sense. Instead of harpooning them (which would require syncing up orbit and approaching within 60' as well).. I recommended that they send up an unmanned craft that grabs the satellites/space junk, puts it in the bay, smashes it, then (when it's full) re-enters the atmosphere and parachutes down.. gets dusted off.. and relaunched to repeat the process.

It contains the satellite completely, so there isn't the risk of large chunks breaking off and hitting your neighbor in the head. That and, once back on earth, some of those enormously expensive parts can be recycled in some manner.

Makes sense to me.
 
2012-10-04 01:11:05 PM  

PallMall: It contains the satellite completely, so there isn't the risk of large chunks breaking off and hitting your neighbor in the head. That and, once back on earth, some of those enormously expensive parts can be recycled in some manner.


Most things burn up entirely before striking the Earth. And if you have the resources to send a giant ship up to grab a satellite, you certainly have the skill to pull something out of orbit and ensure that it lands in the ocean.

And it would cost an ungodly amount of money to safely bring a satellite back to Earth.

And it is a far easier task for a giant arm to manipulate your own payload - objects that are in your control - than it is to grab a random satellite which may have a host of variables such as spin, weight, etc.
 
2012-10-04 01:18:55 PM  

HailRobonia: Most things burn up entirely before striking the Earth. And if you have the resources to send a giant ship up to grab a satellite, you certainly have the skill to pull something out of orbit and ensure that it lands in the ocean.


Most, but not all.. which is why they're trying to figure out how to "harpoon" them in the first place.. to add additional safeguards to make sure no larger pieces come crashing down. Haven't you seen the news where large pieces of space debris have come crashing to earth? Sheesh!

And it would cost an ungodly amount of money to safely bring a satellite back to Earth.

If you can fit a dozen or so crushed satellites (maybe more) into my compactor idea, then the costs just went down. And given that private enterprise is currently working on rockets to send stuff to space, the costs aren't nearly as high as having NASA do it on the tax-payers dime.

And it is a far easier task for a giant arm to manipulate your own payload - objects that are in your control - than it is to grab a random satellite which may have a host of variables such as spin, weight, etc.

Well, they manage to dock with the ISS regularly... which requires far more precision to avoid large scale space catastrophe than reaching for a satellite.

And considering they used the Canadarm to grab space objects already, they don't have to develop and test anything new. We already have the technology.
 
2012-10-04 01:42:46 PM  
upload.wikimedia.org 
 
2012-10-04 01:43:34 PM  
Considering things like solar pannels get deployed after release I would imagine you would need somebody to go out and remove some things first if you were going to grab it and pull it in.

The biggest problem is there isn't anything to brace against so equal and opposite reaction is a major factor.

I wonder if we should just catch a bunch of junk in a big net and then either send it drifting out into space or calculate it to fall into the ocean as a large unit. You could probably even attach it to a float system to recover it if you wanted.
 
2012-10-04 01:52:50 PM  
This guy already did it.

riot-web-static.s3.amazonaws.com
 
2012-10-04 01:54:14 PM  

PallMall:
Well, they manage to dock with the ISS regularly... which requires far more precision to avoid large scale space catastrophe than reaching for a satellite.

And considering they used the Canadarm to grab space objects already, they don't have to develop and test anything new. We already have the technology.


Of course, this assumes that you are in the same orbital plane, or can change your inclination easily (you can't, lots of fuel needed). You would pretty much have to send a single collector to take down a single satellite. This is why satellites are either designed with end of life deorbiting systems or are in a lower orbit that degrades and they reboost as needed until they run out of fuel and deorbit from drag.
 
2012-10-04 01:54:44 PM  

NBSV: Considering things like solar pannels get deployed after release I would imagine you would need somebody to go out and remove some things first if you were going to grab it and pull it in.


Not if you're just going to deorbit it to burn up.

The biggest problem is there isn't anything to brace against so equal and opposite reaction is a major factor.

Not really. "Equal" is an important point here... When the mass of the harpoon is really tiny compared to the mass of your satellite, then it's not going to bother you much.
 
2012-10-04 02:05:05 PM  

parkke0108: Of course, this assumes that you are in the same orbital plane, or can change your inclination easily (you can't, lots of fuel needed). You would pretty much have to send a single collector to take down a single satellite. This is why satellites are either designed with end of life deorbiting systems or are in a lower orbit that degrades and they reboost as needed until they run out of fuel and deorbit from drag.


But this harpoon system is free from those same requirements?

Don't be a knave.
 
2012-10-04 02:27:38 PM  

PallMall: parkke0108: Of course, this assumes that you are in the same orbital plane, or can change your inclination easily (you can't, lots of fuel needed). You would pretty much have to send a single collector to take down a single satellite. This is why satellites are either designed with end of life deorbiting systems or are in a lower orbit that degrades and they reboost as needed until they run out of fuel and deorbit from drag.

But this harpoon system is free from those same requirements?

Don't be a knave.


Of course it's subject to the same requirements. I don't think it will work either, but I was simply stating that orbital mechanics is not quite as simple as people think it is.
 
2012-10-04 02:39:50 PM  

parkke0108: Of course it's subject to the same requirements. I don't think it will work either, but I was simply stating that orbital mechanics is not quite as simple as people think it is.


ytrewq.com
 
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