Deterministic Studies of Debris Hazards with Parallel Processors
Proceedings of the First European Conference on Space Debris, SD-01
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A new generation of parallel processing computers makes possible the ability to propagate all objects in the space surveillance catalog with simulated objects, and detect close approaches. With this capability, it is possible to test deterministically debris scenarios, without resorting to statistical models. To compare the positions of objects we have developed two methods, an all-to-all comparison and a one-to-all comparison. For the former, a seive significantly reduces computation time; for the latter, direct comparison is possible in parallel. We show results from several simulations, including simulated multiple sources of debris, hazard to the space station, and close contacts amongst the catalog itself, to show potential for debris studies. The techniques described here have potential application the general problem of catalog maintenance.