PDA

View Full Version : Space Junk



Eric Vaxxine
2006-Jan-24, 09:59 AM
More than 9,000 pieces of space debris are orbiting the Earth, a hazard that can only be expected to get worse in the next few years, according to NASA scientists. And currently there's no workable and economic way to clean up the mess.

CNN

http://edition.cnn.com/2006/TECH/space/01/20/spacejunk.ap/index.html

Is this the kind of challenge that private companies could take. Galactic cleaning?

Where there's muck, there's brass (as the saying goes).

Nicolas
2006-Jan-24, 12:57 PM
If funding drops further, the problem will decrease...

Current design aims at minimum debris. But in the past things have accidentally blown up while in orbit, and that creates an enormous mess :). The aim is to create fairings, stages, interstages and the like so that there is minimum extra space junk.

BTw many more than 9000 pieces are orbiting earth. It depends on how precisely you look. Chips of paint are space debris as well, and for some things they're dangerous.

Nicolas
2006-Jan-24, 01:03 PM
A 2004 NASA report identified Russia as the source of the largest number of debris items, closely followed by the United States. Other sources were France, China, India, Japan and the European Space Agency.

Also known as about all space fairing countries :D



(what difference do they make between France and ESA?)

Argos
2006-Jan-24, 01:15 PM
Maybe because France is a pioneer (3rd space faring nation - 1965) and largest ESA contributor (though I think there shouldn´t be any distinction)

Nicolas
2006-Jan-24, 01:26 PM
They were early, but even the Europa launches were already under the flag of ELDO and the like. Did they create space debris in launches under the flag of France only?

Argos
2006-Jan-24, 01:35 PM
No, I don´t think so, since ELDO began working in 1962 (I just learned that). It´s just CNN doing it again.

gwiz
2006-Jan-24, 02:35 PM
They were early, but even the Europa launches were already under the flag of ELDO and the like. Did they create space debris in launches under the flag of France only?
ELDO's dismal launch record didn't actually result in anything getting to orbit. The French national launch programme, using the Diamant vehicle, ran in parallel with Europa, and was separate from ELDO and later ESA. The national programmes of UK and Australia had one successful launch each, and Brazil's has yet to succeed. Italy had several successful launches.