The Impact of Atmospheric Models on the Dynamics of Space Tether Systems
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Space debris has become an increasingly larger concern for aerospace travel and exploration. One idea to control the space debris population is to de-orbit defunct satellites using a space tether system. A space tether system is often made up of three parts: the main satellite, the tether and the sub-satellite. The tether connects the main satellite and the sub-satellite. Space tether systems make use of the Lorentz force as an electrodynamic drag for de-orbit. We use an established model of a space tether system to observe how satellites de-orbit. This model was constructed in MATLAB (Simulink) and uses the 1976 U.S. Standard Atmosphere. However, we wish to investigate how the model behaves using newer and more accurate atmospheric models, namely, the Jacchia-Bowman 2008 model and the Drag Temperature Model 2013. We also investigate the effect of controlling the tether's libration energy under the three aforementioned atmospheric models.