Space Station tethered waste disposalThe Shuttle Transportation System (STS) launches more payload to the Space Station than can be returned creating an accumulation of waste. Several methods of deorbiting the waste are compared including an OMV, solid rocket motors, and a tether system. The use of tethers is shown to offer the unique potential of having a net savings in STS launch requirement. Tether technology is being developed which can satisfy the deorbit requirements but additional effort is required in waste processing, packaging, and container design. The first step in developing this capability is already underway in the Small Expendable Deployer System program. A developmental flight test of a tether initiated recovery system is seen as the second step in the evolution of this capability.
Rupp, Charles C. (NASA Marshall Space Flight Center Huntsville, AL, United States)
August 14, 2013
January 1, 1988
Meeting: Intl. Conference on Space Tethers for Science in the Space Station Era