- Conference date: 9–13 January 1994
- Location: Albuquerque, New Mexico (USA)
A proposed mission plan for the TOPAZ powered spacecraft would have the spacecraft start at a 28.5° inclined circular orbit and spiral outward until well above the geostationary equatorial orbit (GEO). With communication and weather satellites located approximately every 2° at GEO, there is a probability that the TOPAZ powered spacecraft will pass near one of these satellites. A simple calculation shows that the low power of the TOPAZ spacecraft (125 kWt) combined with its high relative velocity (1,514 m/s) results in a very small dose to a satellite in equatorial orbit. There is a probability of 10−6 that the TOPAZ will pass within 200 m of a satellite; at 200 m the resulting gamma dose will be less than 1 mr and the integrated neutron flux will be on the order of 1010 n/m2. Other scenarios are equally benign.
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