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Of or relating to two or more celestial bodies that share, or very nearly share, the same orbit.
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This can be accomplished either through a direct-ascent antisatellite (ASAT) weapon, or a co-orbital ASAT weapon, where a satellite is placed into a similar or intercepting orbit as its target, and then maneuvered into a collision course with it.
The uncertainty involved increases exponentially if hostile CubeSats are deployed as co-orbital ASAT devices.
China is developing, and has demonstrated, a wide range of counter-space technologies to include direct-ascent, kinetic-kill vehicles, co-orbital technologies that can disable or destroy a satellite, terrestrially-based communications jammers, and lasers that can blind or disable satellites," he said.
The co-orbital ASAT is carried to orbit by a space launch vehicle, then reaches its target only after one or two orbital revolutions.
The IS family of ASATs were co-orbital systems which achieved the interception by means of a conventional explosive.
To determine how the 60 kilometre-wide ball of rock and ice ended up sharing an orbit with Uranus the astronomers created a simulation of the Solar System and its co-orbital objects, including Trojans.
Surprisingly, our model predicts that at any given time three per cent of scattered objects between Jupiter and Neptune should be co-orbitals of Uranus or Neptune," Mike Alexandersen, lead author of the study said.
One of them, R/2006 S 1, lies at the same distance as the co-orbital moons Janus and Epimetheus, 151,500 km from the planet's center.
Two satellites that are just inside Mimas's orbit are unusual in being co-orbital.
The long-known satellite Dione was found to have a tiny co-orbital companion.
Researchers have demonstrated for the first time that this and a further two objects of the group of the Centaurs are co-orbital with Uranus.