Evolution of the Debris Cloud Generated by the Fengyun-1C Fragmentation EventThe cloud of cataloged debris produced in low earth orbit by the fragmentation of the Fengyun-1C spacecraft was propagated for 15 years, taking into account all relevant perturbations. Unfortunately, the cloud resulted to be very stable, not suffering substantial debris decay during the time span considered. The only significant short term evolution was the differential spreading of the orbital planes of the fragments, leading to the formation of a debris shell around the earth approximately 7-8 months after the breakup, and the perigee precession of the elliptical orbits. Both effects will render the shell more "isotropic" in the coming years. The immediate consequence of the Chinese anti-satellite test, carried out in an orbital regime populated by many important operational satellites, was to increase significantly the probability of collision with man-made debris. For the two Italian spacecraft launched in the first half of 2007, the collision probability with cataloged objects increased by 12% for AGILE, in equatorial orbit, and by 38% for COSMO-SkyMed 1, in sun-synchronous orbit.
Pardini, Carmen (Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche Pisa, Italy)
Anselmo, Luciano (Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche Pisa, Italy)
August 24, 2013
September 24, 2007
Publication: Proceedings of the 20th International Symposium on Space Flight Dynamics