Robotics On-Orbit Servicing: A Space Risk Today, A Game Changer Tomorrow

Author(s): Malak Trabelsi Loeb

Technology is the fundamental catalyzer of the New Space economy, in addition to a sustainable investments’ flow into the space commercial activities undergone by the private actors. Nonetheless, technology is also one of the primary sources of space hazards. That
starts with the design and manufacturing stage of the space object. Technological risk implies human errors and industrial risks, including design and manufacture risks. To date, technology remains the primary source of risk in relation to both, the satellite launch vehicle and the
satellite which is assessed and managed since the early stages of the space project to the satellite on-orbit stage. Notwithstanding new technologies and the progress made to overcome setbacks of the propellant propulsion systems, every attempt to use new technology is a new risk due to the un-tried technologies and the lack of data. One of the potential future technological sources of hazard is the "On-Orbit-Servicing" (OOS), which could be used to satellites, space stationsand spacecrafts