Litterbugs in Space: Why the Growing Cloud of Debris in Orbit Needs to Be Cleaned Up

Artist’s concept showing thousands of satellites and other debris orbiting Earth. Photo Credit: ESA

Since 1957, there have been almost 7,000 satellites launched into Earth’s orbit by various countries and private companies. Their missions range from scientific observation and weather tracking to communications and broadcasting television. Roughly half of those satellites are still […]

Countering the Threat Posed by Orbital Debris

In this computer simulation, the sheer amount of orbital debris becomes apparent—as does the need to find a way to prevent it. Image Credit: NASA

There’s a lot of junk up there. Around 20,000 bits and pieces of satellites and old rocket parts, bigger than 5 cm (2 inches) across, are floating around […]