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space junk

Space Junk
Image: Science Channel

Space Junk

We may think of space as a black void, a vacuum, but the space closest to us is littered with debris — often that we created.

This space junk can damage the many working spacecraft in orbit. Even a fleck of paint, traveling at 300 miles per second, can crack a windshield!

Science Channel
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A Minefield in Earth’s Orbit

A Minefield in Earth’s Orbit

Even the International Space Station has had to dodge dangerous space junk over the past few years. Have we created a minefield in space? More...

Interactive
Scientific American
Space Junk & the Swiss “Janitor Satellite”

Space Junk & the Swiss “Janitor Satellite”

Space junk threatens the International Space Stations and the satellites we rely on for global communication. Who's going to clean up this mess? Take a look at one plan. More...

Video
Veritasium
Nature’s Tiniest Space Junk

Nature’s Tiniest Space Junk

Not all space debris is made by humans. Tiny meteoroids swarm around our planet, creating a hazard for spacecraft. NASA scientists have found a way to detect them using a TV signal. More...

Article
NASA
Space Junk: Worse than You Think

Space Junk: Worse than You Think

Even the smallest pieces of space junk can cause big problems. Take a look at some of the damage it's caused and what's being done to track all that debris.
More...

Interactive
CNET
Where Falling Satellite Lands Is Anyone’s Guess

Where Falling Satellite Lands Is Anyone’s Guess

Lottie Williams was as grazed by a piece of falling space junk during an early-morning walk in a Tulsa Park. The small piece of burned mesh likely came from a returning Delta II rocket. More...

Article
NPR
Battling Space Junk with a Tractor Beam of Static Electricity

Battling Space Junk with a Tractor Beam of Static Electricity

Could space junk (orbiting debris) be cleaned up with static electricity? Discover why scientists think electrostatic forces could be the answer to the Kessler Syndrome. More...

Article
WIRED
CleanSpace One

CleanSpace One

How do you clean up space? Ask the Swiss! They're building a space robot to intercept and destroy all that floating junk. More...

Video
PBS NewsHour
Satellites and Space Junk

Satellites and Space Junk

The space outside Earth's atmosphere is filled with satellites and space junk. In fact, some satellites have become space junk. Find out more here. More...

Interactive
National Geographic
Tracking & Removing Orbital Debris

Tracking & Removing Orbital Debris

There are millions of pieces of space junk orbiting Earth. Where did it come from? Why is it so dangerous? Will it ever go away? Get answers. More...

Article
Space.com

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