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Precise in-orbit debris tracking using fiber laser technology

Uncontrollable objects in the Earth’s orbit are a big nuisance and danger for modern space travel. As the modern economy is dependant on satellites, in-orbit debris is also a risk for the global economy. Orbit debris consists mainly of decommissioned or damaged satellites, fragments of space stations and other remnants of space missions. The main danger that space debris poses is the risk of collision with active satellites and spacecrafts which, in turn, could create many more pieces of debris, causing a snowball effect.
Modern satellites are used for multiple applications, such as weather forecasting, telecommunications, navigation, etc.; satellites have become an integral part of the modern economy, therefore any damage to the satellites is may cause significant damage to the economy.
Tracking the debris is, therefore, an important issue that, if solved, will prevent damage to active satellites and spacecrafts. As salvaging can be difficult due to the uncontrollable nature of the debris, reliable tracking techniques need to be developed first. Laser systems are considered to be the perfect solution to this problem.
Laser systems can be utilized to determine the exact position of an object and the direction of its movement. A fiber laser system has been developed for tracking the debris; the system utilized high power fiber lasers that are required to withstand the extreme conditions in space. The system has to withstand high vibrations that occur on the carrier rocket during the launch, where the laser is subjected to the high physical strain. In orbit, there are even more factors that need to be taken into consideration during the design of the system: exposure to radiation, extreme temperature fluctuations, low energy supply. Moreover, the laser system needs to analyze objects from long distances. Common laser technologies are not able to cope with extreme conditions.
The main principle of the system is the use of short laser pulses that are shot at different positions to determine the position, speed, and direction of motion. Femtosecond and picosecond fiber lasers may be used as they produce short laser pulses as well. Another issue is power consumption: fiber laser systems require less energy than other conventional lasers, which makes them ideal for space applications.
Optromix Inc., headquartered in Cambridge, MA, USA, is a manufacturer of laser technologies, optical fiber sensors, and optical monitoring systems.
We develop and manufacture a broad variety of Fiber lasers, СО2 lasers, Ti: Sapphire lasers, Dye lasers, and Excimer Lasers. We offer simple Erbium laser and Ytterbium laser products, as well as sophisticated laser systems with unique characteristics, based on the client’s inquiry.
We manufacture lasers using our own technologies based on the advanced research work and patents of international R&D team.Laser processes are high quality, high precision, easily-automated manufacturing solutions that provide repeatability and flexibility.
If you are interested in Optromix fiber laser systems, please contact us at