The Pentagon’s research division plans to send robots to repair and modernize satellites on a geosynchronous earth orbit.
The Department of Prospective Research Projects of the US Department of Defense (DARPA) considers cosmic robots with an optimal option for servicing devices at an altitude of 36 km. As part of the program «Robotic maintenance of geosynchronous satellites», the Pentagon will cooperate with several teams of engineers. Together they will create automated devices and a special spacecraft to move in the open space.
After deployment, the system will periodically approach telecommunications, military, meteorological satellites and as necessary to maintain or upgrade them in orbit. Each can perform dozens of missions for several years.
Satellites are difficult to repair, so they have a lot of backup systems that are activated when fault occurs. It increases the weight, cost and complexity of the devices. The possibility of servicing directly in space will be partially abandoned by additional devices, which will make them more accessible.
Robotic systems will also increase the reliability of the orbital infrastructure. It is assumed that the development of devices and the ship will be required for five years. May 22 Darpa will begin to accept contractors.