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Man-made objects in orbit around the Earth are known as resident space objects (RSO). These consist of satellites, spacecraft, and other space facilities. Junk objects or debris which develop as a result of spacecraft malfunction, space launch, or space flight, are another category of RSOs. There are currently around 23,000 pieces of space junk as small as 5 cm. Smaller items, on the other hand, are known to exist in much higher quantities. The capacity to identify, follow, and forecast the motion of all RSOs, such as space debris, is known as space domain awareness (SDA). To increase the resilience of Space systems, it is important to first understand the risks and threats that affect them.

Today’s communications, media, business, navigation, agriculture, and meteorology are just a few of the fields that rely heavily on satellite technology. Modern technology is supported by more than a thousand operational satellites in orbit, representing expenditures totaling trillions of dollars. It is crucial to safeguard these assets from destruction and intervention. To stop the loss of space assets due to unintentional accidents, SDA development is crucial.

The threat of broad space asset destruction is serious due to the rising contamination of space by waste and debris. Active satellites and space debris frequently collide; in fact, one to two working spacecraft are lost each year as a result of collisions. It is now more crucial than ever to keep an eye on how space is being used because of the growing militarization of space, which includes clandestinely putting weapons into orbit and the possibility of using space itself as a battlefield. To cope with SDA, numerous nations have established organizations or hired businesses. Companies having experience in this industry are being acquired by other businesses.

The UK-based startup Northern Space and Security, or NORSS, which focuses on orbital analysis, space domain awareness (SDA), space surveillance, and tracking, was set to be acquired, according to an announcement made on July 18 by Raytheon Intelligence & Space.

Ralph Dinsley, a former member of the Royal Air Force, established NORSS in 2017. It has obtained a contract with the UK Ministry of Defence to construct a new simulator system for creating and testing prospective British military constellations and satellites. It now offers orbital analyst technical solutions to the UK Space Agency. The acquisition’s price and conditions weren’t made public.

The Strategic Research Group of Raytheon UK, a division of the company’s UK-based space business, is particularly interested in the space domain awareness field. The deal offers NORSS a chance to enter the American market.

“Once completed, the acquisition will enable NORSS expansion by providing access to new markets,” said Dinsley, the organization’s executive director. We will have improved access to global markets as a subsidiary of Raytheon Intelligence & Space, ongoing investments in development and research, and chances to work together on the newest space technology. Incorporating the two “would improve the quality of the UK’s orbital analysis and SSA (space situational awareness) systems,” according to Jeff Lewis, chief executive of Raytheon UK.

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