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Satellite Communications Technology

Earthfence radar observes Intelsat 29e debris field

(19 April 2019 - Thoth Technology) Thoth Technology is using its Earthfence deep space radar to observe the stricken spacecraft Intelsat 29e.

Earthfence is the world’s first commercial radar service to monitor events in geostationary orbits and to report results to spacecraft operators and other interested parties.

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Earthfence radar arc tracks of a debris field after the Intelsat 29e spacecraft anomaly are shown, April 18, 2019. A normal radar track of Intelsat 29e, January 12, 2019 (inset top) is shown for comparison. Earthfence ranges spacecraft up to 50,000 km from Earth locating them to within 25 meters. (courtesy: Thoth Technology)

“Our Earthfence radar observes a debris field orbiting in the previously recorded location of the Intelsat 29e spacecraft,” said Dr. Brendan Quine, Thoth’s CTO. “It is likely that the spacecraft has broken up into three or more smaller pieces.”

Intelsat 29e has been declared a total loss.

“Space Situational Awareness is critical to our national security and daily lives, and we are monitoring this significant event,” said Dr. Caroline Roberts, Thoth’s President and CEO.