Astroscale’s ADRAS-J Mission: Rocket Lab To Launch


Rocket Lab announced to Launch Astroscale’s ADRAS-J mission in 2023. The  Electron spacecraft will take off from Launch Complex 1 in Newzealand.

The ADRAS-J will be launched to inspect rendezvous with a spent rocket stage in low earth orbit. This is about the preparation for deorbiting the rocket stage. 

Eventually, the Astroscale mission is about to complete JAXA’s Commercial Removal of Debris Demonstration Project. 

Rocket Lab’s Contract With ADRAS-J Satellite 

Rocket Lab announced on 21 September that it has signed a contract with Astroscale Japan’s mission of Active Debris Removal by Astroscale Japan (ADRAS-J). This is for the 1st phase of JAXA’s commercial debris removal project. 

The CEO of Astroscale, Nobu Okada reported that Electron rocket will allow them to proceed with its on-orbit services. This will then work for the growth of space economy and Infrastructure. 

Thus, the contract between these two space experts has high ambitions for future developments. However, the launch contract is Rocket Lab’s second contract of this month. The first one was for five Electron launches of 25-satellite Internet-of-things. 

Also read: NASA Selected Five U.S Space Companies For Lunar Lander Concepts

About Astroscale’s ADRAS-J Mission 

Previously, the Japanese space Agency JAXA started the mission of a two phase Commercial Removal of Debris Demonstrations project. However, they failed in the second phase of deorbiting the upper stage. 

This is because of unused manmade junk revolving in the earth’s orbit which is known as space debris. It could pose the risk of collision with other satellites.

For this purpose, Astroscale is working on the removal of this space debris. Other companies also set certain projects for this purpose. The European Space Agency ESA also had a contract with Swiss start-up Clear Space in 2020. 

Statement Of Rocket Lab’s CEO 

Peter Beck the founder and CEO of Rocket Lab said that the project of ADRAS-J would be a complex task for them. This requires absolute precision especially during the deployment phase. 

He added that it will be a great task to deal with a piece of debris revolving at a speed of 27000 km per hour in orbit. This is the most important point to consider for them. However he reported that he is excited by having this project of organizing a sustainable environment for the future.

Aims Of Astroscale Space Company 

Astroscale started functioning in 2013. It is the first private space company aims to secure the sustainability of space. Astroscale is working on the projects of development for a safe and sustainable space for the benefits of future generations.

For this purpose, Astroscale have initiated hundreds of innovative projects. These including in situ space situational awareness, removal of active debris to mitigate hazardous formation of debris in space. 

Astroscale is also developing scalable solutions considering on-orbiting services. This is for the purpose of future research and development on space. Moreover Astroscale is coordinating with businesses and governments on the issues of developing norms and regulations about responsible use of space. 

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