Harpoons, robots and lasers: how to capture space junk and bring it back to Earth

An estimated 130 million objects smaller than 1cm are in orbit. Image: Pexels/Pixabay

Ralph Cooney
Professor Emeritus in Advanced Materials, University of Auckland
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A ray of light heading upwards into the sky.
Mega constellations of satellites currently being sent into space by corporations such as SpaceX and Amazon are expected to transform access to the internet for all countries. Image: Unsplash/SpaceX

A satellite moving around in space with debris falling off.
Collisions between space objects creating ever more debris, could also damage our global communications and navigation systems. Image: The Conversation.
A ClearSpace chaser is designed to use robotic arms to capture space debris.
A ClearSpace chaser is designed to use robotic arms to capture space debris. Image: The Conversation.


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