Space debris detection over intersatellite communication signals

Antti Anttonen (Corresponding Author), Markku Kiviranta, Marko Höyhtyä

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)
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In this paper, we apply a space-borne radar and communications (SBRC) concept for detecting space debris over signals that are designed solely for communication purposes. By using a hidden capability of intersatellite communications signals to act as a radar signal as well, we propose a new approach for debris detection that can be used to address the challenges of long-distance and ground-based detection without introducing a separate space-borne radar infrastructure. The performance of the proposed SBRC approach is evaluated from the two timely perspectives in emerging satellite communications, i.e. high-density constellations and 5G satellites. Several new findings are discovered and demonstrated via sophisticated simulations. These include the effect of system-level cooperation gain in small debris detection and link-level estimation of high-velocity debris motion.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)156-166
Number of pages11
JournalActa Astronautica
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2021
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • Fifth generation (5G)
  • High-density constellations
  • Space-borne radar and communications (SBRC)
  • Space debris


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