NASA concern as junk from an old rocket spotted near space station

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NASA is assessing the potential risk of a piece of space debris that has been seen heading towards the International Space Station (ISS).

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The space agency said the debris is a fragment of an old rocket and could come close to the ISS as early as Friday.

NASA said the seven crew members aboard the space station are not considered to be in any danger, but if the risk to the station is deemed serious, NASA and its international partners may temporarily adjust the orbit of the space station. For will maneuver to avoid debris. ISS.


The closest pass to the wreckage is likely to happen around 5:30 a.m. Friday, with any maneuvers likely to take place around 3 p.m.

Highlighting the growing problem of dangerous space debris and the need for an effective solution to remove it, NASA stated that the debris, labeled “Object 39915”, comes from an old Pegasus rocket launched by the US in May 1994 and whose upper body was blown up to the ground. The stage was broken. Two years later.

Controllers and experts in Houston are assessing the potential risk of a piece of rocket debris that could pass close to the station early Friday.

— International Space Station (@Space_Station) 3 December 2021

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Near-Earth space debris poses a constant threat to the ISS as well as the many functioning satellites that provide vital services on the ground.

A few weeks ago, astronauts aboard the space station were ordered to take shelter in their docked spacecraft when controllers suddenly noticed a new cloud of debris approaching the station.

The junk was created by a Russian missile test conducted on one of its older satellites earlier that same day, with the explosion producing about 1,500 pieces of debris.

Fortunately the ISS was not harmed in that particular incident, but the angry international response to the missile test put the space station and its inhabitants in real danger.

NASA and its partners have technology to help track down large pieces of space debris, giving it enough time to take action when needed.

Several companies are developing ways to clean up thousands of pieces of potentially dangerous near-Earth space junk, although it may still take some time before such systems are deployed. Meanwhile, space agencies have to deal with the issue by moving their satellites to avoid possible collisions.

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