Robotic space probe made to help clean up space debris

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Researchers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute are developing a new orbital device that would aid in cleaning up space debris surrounding the planet.

There are around 128 million pieces of debris in space as of January 2019, according to a report by the European Space Agency.

According to a news release by the institute, the spacecraft will be called OSCaR or Obsolete Spacecraft Capture and Removal. The space probe will be a CubeSat, a small, rectangular satellite, which will be made of up three 10 cm x 10 cm x 10 x cm units.

The first CubeSat units will contain GPS, data storage and communication systems while the second will consist of a propulsion system. The third unit would contain nets and tethers which would be used to capture the space debris.

The device will be sent to outer space aboard larger spacecrafts and then be released.

OSCaR would use sensors such as thermal and RADAR imaging sensors to help locate and capture space debris.

The spacecraft will automatically destroy itself and all the debris it has captured within five years, according to the Rensselaer Institute news release.

RUNDOWN SHOWS:
1. OSCaR spacecraft and space debris
2. Dimensions of the spacecraft
3. What each of its three units will contain
4. The spacecraft capturing debris

VOICEOVER (in English):
"Researchers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute are developing a new orbital device that would aid in cleaning up space debris surrounding the planet."

"According to a news release by the institute, the spacecraft will be called OSCaR or Obsolete Spacecraft Capture and Removal."

"The space probe will be a CubeSat, a small, rectangular satellite, which will be made of up three 10 cm x 10 cm x 10 x cm units."

"The first CubeSat units will contain GPS, data storage and communication systems while the second will consist of a propulsion system."

"The third unit would contain nets and tethers which would be used to capture the space debris."

"The device will be sent to outer space aboard larger spacecrafts and then be released."

"OSCaR would use sensors such as thermal and RADAR imaging sensors to help locate and capture space debris."

SOURCES: Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Space.com, European Space Agency
https://news.rpi.edu/content/2019/04/23/rensselaer-team-developing-tool-battle-space-debris
https://www.space.com/space-junk-cleanup-cubesat-oscar.html
https://m.esa.int/Our_Activities/Operations/Space_Safety_Security/Space_Debris/Space_debris_by_the_numbers