Optical network for monitoring near-earth space objects

To ensure situational awareness in near-earth space, VIMPEL Interstate Corporation deployed a network of robotic optical telescopes for near-earth space objects monitoring and established an information analysis center for planning of observations using telescopes, data acquisition on the basis of observations, joint data processing, analysis and storage in a database.

The network specializes in monitoring of near-earth space objects with high angular speeds in low and medium orbits, as well as in the out-of-apogee sections of high elliptical orbits. Priority is given to space objects that are insufficiently measured with the existing information means: man-made objects aborting from orbits, SO lost during emergency launches, near colliding SO, etc.

Currently, VIMPEL’s network includes 13 telescopes located in Crimea, Tiraspol, Kislovodsk, Chistopol, Moscow, Ussuriysk, Blagoveschensk, and Chile.

The network telescopes process image frames with effective observation background suppression, which enables observations of low-contrast SO, as well as telescope operation in the twilight. Daily monitoring of network telescopes’ accuracy is carried out by observing reference satellites tracked by the International Laser Ranging Service.