# How many dead sats near GEO?

It's my understanding a geosynchronous satellite will put itself in a graveyard orbit just before it dies.

How many dead sats are in GEO or in neighboring graveyard orbits?

What is their total mass?

• I can find the number of unclassified satellites in the belt, but I'm having trouble getting the number of active satellites in the group. Hopefully I can get this figured out... Commented Jun 29, 2015 at 17:39
• So, I'm going to remove the last bit, as it is an interesting question in and of itself. Feel free to ask a question specifically geared towards it. Commented Jun 29, 2015 at 18:48

This is a difficult question to answer, so I'm going to take a stab based off of a few assumptions.

1. GEO satellites are ones with a period between 1430-1450 minutes (Standard definition from NORAD)
2. I have no knowledge of classified satellites, those will not be included.
3. I'm going to assume you mean GSO satellites (Geostationary).
4. Active GEO satellites have a near 0 inclination, dead ones will have a non-zero inclination. Why? GSO satellites drift in inclination over time.
5. GSO satellites will have an eccentricity near zero, dead or living. This doesn't vary as much as the inclination.

Okay, so given those, what are we looking at? Norad lists 804 objects in that orbital period range in orbit. Of these, here are some statistics:

• 797 have a perigee of at least 35000 km (Low eccentricity)