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34th AIAA/ASME/SAE/ASEE Joint Propulsion Conference and Exhibit
I . A . M o t i v a t i o n : O r b i t a l D e b r i s i n L E O Currently, the US Space Command tracks roughly 6,000 objects in LEO. Less than 300 of these objects are operational spacecraft. The rest are spent rockets and derelict spacecraft. 3 In addition, there are countless numbers of debris objects too small to be tracked; these objects result from explosions of rocket stages and fragmentation of spacecraft. These objects pose a growing risk to operational spacecraft. Moreover, in t h edoi:10.2514/6.1998-3491 fatcat:xd73cvgalfbwpkpdpddll4j67m