SWGL Fan Shop 2023

Rocket Lab wins launch rights to Astroscale’s debris removal mission

Image: Astroscale

Edinburgh, 23 September 2021. – Rocket Lab has signed a contract with Astroscale Japan to launch the Active Debris Removal by the Astroscale-Japan (ADRAS-J) satellite.

Astroscale is dedicated to on-orbit servicing across all orbits. Founded in 2013, the company claims to be developing scalable solutions for life extension, in-situ space situational awareness, end-of-life services, and active debris removal.

ADRAS-J, selected by JAXA for Phase I of its Commercial Removal of Debris Demonstration Project (CRD2), will be launched by an Electron rocket. This will be one of the first technology demonstrations of large-scale debris removal from orbit. Once deployed, the ADRAS-J satellite is designed to meet with a long abandoned upper stage rocket body.

ADRAS-J will carry out proximity operations and obtain images of the orbital debris. Lift-off from Rocket Lab Launch Complex 1 is scheduled for 2023. The second phase of the mission to validate the de-orbiting of the debris is yet to be completed.

Check Also

EU SST

EU SST Wins T.S. Kelso Award for Flight Safety Contributions

Space Data Association has announced The European Union Space Surveillance and Tracking Partnership (EU SST) as the recipient of the T.S. Kelso Award in recognition of outstanding contributions to space flight safety. The EU SST Partnership relies on the SSA capabilities of 15 Member states of the European Union to provide space safety services, with the EU Agency for the Space Programme (EUSPA) acting as the Front Desk.