The paper discusses the mathematical modeling of long-term orbital debris evolution taking into account mutual collisions of space debris particles of different sizes. Investigations and long-term forecasts of orbital debris environment evolution in low Earth orbits are essential for future space mission hazard evaluation and for adopting rational space policies and mitigation measures. The paper introduces a new approach to space debris evolution mathematical modeling based on continuum mechanics incorporating partial differential equations. This is an alternative to the traditional approaches of celestial mechanics incorporating ordinary differential equations to model fragments evolution. The continuum approach to orbital debris evolution modeling has essential advantages for describing the evolution of a large number of particles, because it replaces the traditional tracking of space objects by modeling the evolution of their density of distribution.
Space Debris – Springer Journals
Published: Oct 8, 2004
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