ABOUT ELECTRODYNAMIC TETHER, ITS STABILIZATION, ITS ADVANTAGES. In an “electrodynamic tether drag” system, such as the Terminator Tether, the tether can be used to reduce the orbit of the spacecraft to which it is attached. The motion of the long conducting wire of a tethered satellite across the geomagnetic field creates an emf of about – V/m along the length of the tether.

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electricity – How does an ElectroDynamic Tether (EDT) clear space debris? – Physics Stack Exchange

In other words, a full-up deorbit system would need lots of things some method of control, approach, and capture of debris included. This conducting single-line tether was tetber after five hours of deployment.

However, there is a way to turn this “bug” into a feature. The coordinates are the first thing that must be identified. In addition, the geometry of the conducting body plays an important role in the size of the sheath and thus the total collection capability.

Then raise back up and repeat. If I understand correctly, the current mission is one of measurement flectrodynamic induced current and voltage rather than an attempt at actually clearing space debris. The region between the high density plume and the surrounding plasma is termed a double sheath or double layer. The amount of current I flowing through a tether depends on various factors. The characteristics of the TSS which are related to high voltages, electrical currents, energy storage, power, and the generation of plasma waves are described.


The primary passive processes that control the electron and ion collection on an EDT system are thermal current collection, ion ram collection affects, electron photoemission, and possibly secondary electron and ion emission.

Electrodynamic Tether / ACT / ESA

As a result of this process, an electrodynamic force acts on the tether and attached object, slowing their orbital motion. Electrodynamic tethers allow you to take power and electrons and use that to “push” against the earth’s magnetic field for propulsion. Improved methods include creating an electron emitter, such as a thermionic cathodeplasma cathode, plasma contactor, or field electron emission device.

So far, so good.

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Science fiction author David Brin has made a good story from available; you might want to go read Tank Farm Dynamo. Well, just such a shift in mood could be upon us. This idea could act as a Hypersonic Airplane Space Tether Orbital Launch system, or be utilized to handle other launch systems other than hypersonic airplanes.

This can be expressed as:. In principle, electrodynamic drag tethers can also be used to generate electrical power in space. This is followed by the simplified, all insulated tether model.

The board concluded that after arcing had burned tetjer most of the Kevlar, the few remaining strands were not gether to withstand forces being exerted by satellite deployment In terms of energy, the kinetic “movement” energy of the satellite and tether system orbiting around Earth is converted into electric energy. The below chart displays the temperature limiting currents and SCL effects. The TSS-1 first flew on STS inbut a mechanical problem allowed the satellite to be deployed only to height of feet.


I will amend this post if I think of a better idea.

However, an uninsulated tether will be able to collect free electrons over a large part of its length instead of just at its tip. The voltage along the tether will attract these free, negatively charged electrons at its positively charged end called the anode. You run a current through the wire.

The insulation breach provided a path for the current to jump, or arc, from the copper wire in the tether to a nearby electrical ground If anyone knows where a copy might be available please contact us at webmaster.

The batteries in return will be used to control power and communication circuits, as well as drive the electron emitting devices at the negative end of the tether. Clearing large debris objects with current sats would take a large amount of fuel.

The concept of current collection to a bare conducting tether was first formalized by Sanmartin and Martinez-Sanchez. Assuming that portion becomes more viable in the future, the additional elsctrodynamic of capturing and de-orbiting debris would need to be worked on.