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Satellite Collision in Space

Posted by Lydia on February 12th, 2009

A US Iridium communications satellite and a non-operational Russian (Cosmos 2251) satellite collided 490 ft above the earth over Siberia Tuesday causing a large debris field in space.

Although it is believed that the International Space Station is not in danger of interacting with the debris field, NASA is keeping a wide-open-eye on the situation in case smaller satellites may be compromised. All of the debris should eventually burn up in our atmosphere. Only three smaller satellites have ever suffered the same fate.

5 people have commented

Frank Cassella said,

A US Iridium communications satellite and a non-operational Russian (Cosmos 2251) satellite collided 490 ft above the earth over Siberia Tuesday causing a large debris field in space.

Are you sure about 490 feet above the earth??


Lydia said,

Sources report distances between under 400 miles to 500 miles. These satellites were in low earth orbit. Did anyone observe the space debris this weekend falling in a line from Calgary, Canada to Austin, TX. ? Some of it may have been from the satellite collision however the object which fell over Austin during a marathon run was not debris from the satellite event.


Aqua said,

The ‘punk rock group’ DEVO hadda song back in the 70’s called ‘Space Junk’. It was about the plight of the SkyLab falling to Earth. Orbital degradation in one thing… crowded sky’s another.

This week, russianspaceweb.com announced that they are building a new space capsule/vehicle. This rocket is their answer to the USA’s Orion capsule project. The vessel will land on rockets instead of parachutes.. kind of like the DCX project of several years ago. One of the goals stated in thier coverage of this vehicle is that this vehicle will be used to remove ‘space junk’ from orbit. I am very curious as to how they might do that?

By the way.. the aft section of this new vehicle appears to be an inflatable module of some sort, perhaps it is a fuel bladder or other? Details were not included in the article, but it was mentioned that this would be the vehicle used for lunar or martian exploration.


Aqua said,

Here’s the actual page addy: http://www.russianspaceweb.com/ppts.html


Steve said,

Is this another case of a mix-up of units!!?? Crash!


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