The Japanese are working on a unique wooden satellite. This is to prevent the creation of space debris.
The Satellites form an important backbone of today’s digital civilization. Global data transmission, GPS signals, weather forecasts and much more would be unthinkable without the helpers in space. Unfortunately, they create a lot of space debris, which is becoming a growing problem for humanity. To prevent this, Japan now wants to build a unique wooden satellite.
A wooden satellite: is that even possible?
In cooperation with the University of Kyoto, a Japanese company is currently working on a satellite made of wood, which is to be made largely of wood. The wood processing company Sumitomo Forestry from Japan is currently investigating with scientists from Kyoto University to what extent wood can be used as a material in space.
Various types of wood are currently being examined for their resistance to extreme conditions on earth. The challenge is to make the wood so resistant that it can withstand the extreme conditions of space weather (solar radiation, temperature fluctuations and particle storms).
The next step is to develop a technical prototype which, if successful, could start production of an airworthy model. This could prevent harmful space debris from being created.
Less space junk from satellites made of wood?
Space debris is becoming more and more of a major problem for mankind because more and more satellites are being put into orbit in order to meet the growing demands of digitization. The scrap that is created endangers satellites and space stations, as collisions can cause great damage. The planning of space projects is also becoming increasingly difficult. In addition, parts can always fall back to earth.
A wooden satellite would be burned upon re-entry into the atmosphere without releasing harmful substances or raining debris on the earth. The lead scientist Takao Doi, who visited the ISS as an astronaut in 2008, revealed in an interview with the BBC.
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