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ASTRIAGraph: Toward an open, transparent, and crowdsourced space traffic and environment monitoring and awareness system
The US department of defense tracks approximately 26000 resident space objects (RSOs) ranging from the size of a softball to a school bus. From these, roughly 2000 are actively controlled and all else are effectively space garbage. As such, they do not transmit their identities making them more difficult to track. Tracking is understood as both detecting an object and positively identifying it. Most of these objects are measured as point detections (i.e. non-resolved). Astrodynamics is the science that studies motion of resident space objects. There are four field effects driving RSO motion: gravitational, radiative, particulates, and geomagnetic. Of these, only the gravitational field effects are independent of the RSO's physical characteristics. The question then is, how do we positively identify all of the RSOs in the population and thus improve our ability to predict their behavior to satisfy a growing need for space safety, security, and sustainability? Moreover, how do we do this in the presence of uncertainty driven by both randomness and ignorance? Dr. Jah will describe current state of practice, compare this to state of the art, and identify scientific and engineering gaps that are in need of being satisfied. He will also provide a summary of his research program at UT Austin and how this focus area fits into a larger vision of rigorous and comprehensive space situational awareness and space traffic management.
Dr. Moriba Jah is the director for Computational Astronautical Sciences and Technologies (CAST), a group within the Oden Institute for Computational Engineering and Sciences (ICES) at The University of Texas at Austin. Dr. Jah came to UT Austin by way of the Air Force Research Laboratory and NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory prior to that, where he was a Spacecraft Navigator on several Mars missions. He is a TED Fellow, a Fellow of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA), the American Astronautical Society (AAS), the Royal Astronomical Society (RAS), the International Association for the Advancement of Space Safety (IAASS), and the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL). Dr. Jah is also an elected member of the International Academy of Astronautics (IAA) as well as the International Institute of Space Law (IISL), has testified to the US congress on his work, and has briefed the United Nations Committee On peaceful Uses of Outer Space (UN-COPUOS) as an invited member to the US delegation. More details at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Moriba_Jah