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Debris from Russian anti-sat test causing numerous near Starlink collisions

According to an official of a company that helps track space junk, the scattered debris from the satellite destroyed by Russia in an anti-satellite test in 2021 has had numerous near collisions with multiple Starlink satellites.

In the Aug. 6 event, Oltrogge said there were more than 6,000 close approaches, defined as being within 10 kilometers, involving 841 Starlink satellites, about 30% of the constellation. It’s unclear how many, if any, of the satellites had to maneuver to avoid collisions.

This conjunction squall was exacerbated by a new group of Starlink satellites. SpaceX launched the first set of “Group 3” Starlink satellites July 10 from Vandenberg Space Force Base into polar orbit, followed by a second set July 22. A third batch of Group 3 satellites is scheduled to launch Aug. 12.

The problem is only going to get worse, as this junk will be in orbit for quite some time.

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Conscious Choice cover

Now available in hardback and paperback as well as ebook!

 

From the press release: In this ground-breaking new history of early America, historian Robert Zimmerman not only exposes the lie behind The New York Times 1619 Project that falsely claims slavery is central to the history of the United States, he also provides profound lessons about the nature of human societies, lessons important for Americans today as well as for all future settlers on Mars and elsewhere in space.

 
Conscious Choice: The origins of slavery in America and why it matters today and for our future in outer space, is a riveting page-turning story that documents how slavery slowly became pervasive in the southern British colonies of North America, colonies founded by a people and culture that not only did not allow slavery but in every way were hostile to the practice.  
Conscious Choice does more however. In telling the tragic history of the Virginia colony and the rise of slavery there, Zimmerman lays out the proper path for creating healthy societies in places like the Moon and Mars.

 

“Zimmerman’s ground-breaking history provides every future generation the basic framework for establishing new societies on other worlds. We would be wise to heed what he says.” —Robert Zubrin, founder of founder of the Mars Society.

 

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3 comments

  • David k

    At some point there is going to have to be a whitelist of registered spacecraft in orbit. Everything not on that list will be assumed space junk will be and forcefully be de-orbited. Countries with secret space assets will hate this, but I think it is inevitable and ultimately a good thing.

  • Picking up what David k is putting down, it is inevitable that NEO at the least, will be subject to environmental regulation. I do not think there is any functional difference between just doing whatever in NEO, and dumping toxic waste in a river. There are only so many useful orbits, and while space is infinite, commercial orbits in NEO is not.

  • Al Fargnoli

    Why call a near miss a “near collision”? It wasn’t any type of collision. “Near miss” means almost not a miss or nearby miss.

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