(20130903) EOS Aura and Shijian (SJ)-11-02 satellite conjunction ppt (saved) web
On September 3, 2013, predicted close approach
Second in a series of SJ-11 satellites launched by China into an orbit very similar to that of the Morning and Afternoon Constellations.
Aura flight controllers prepared a RMM to avoid the close approach. They did not know whether SJ-11-02 was capable of maneuvering.
A request was sent through the US State Department to its Chinese counterpart to let their space agency know of NASA’s planned maneuver. A request was sent through the US State Department to its counterpart in China to let their space agency know of NASA’s planned maneuver, but there was no direct two-way coordination.
Both satellites maneuvered within hours of each other. Fortunately, the 2 maneuvers mitigated the risk.
Example of the need to improve communication with non-constellation satellites.
- Orbital Debris Program Office, https://orbitaldebris.jsc.nasa.gov/