Advanced In-Space Operations
Advanced In-Space Operations are the next crucial stage in space development - one necessary for enhancing services for Earth, and to bring humans into orbiting complexes and to other planets. These operations encompass all emerging orbital technologies for servicing spacecraft, whether by repair, recharging, or refueling. An additional part of this discussion are the emerging technologies for removing the 6,300 tons of orbital debris threatening the Earth-orbiting satellites that provide services in navigation, banking and finance, radio and TV, weather reporting, environmental monitoring, and person-to-person communications. New spacecraft and telerobotic/robotic devices, which will carry out on-orbit servicing and orbital debris cleanup, will be featured, as well as a discussion of the national and international policies that must be embraced to facilitate the development of these in-space operations and spacecraft. This is an area of urgent immediacy, embracing emerging spacecraft designs and policies that will enhance our way of life and enabling future space settlement.