ISS and Chinese satellite debris

Chronological Encyclopedia of Discoveries in Space cover

After being in print for twenty years, the Chronological Encyclopedia of Discoveries in Space, covering everything that was learned on every single space mission in the 20th century, has finally gone out of print.

I presently have my last four hardback copies available for sale. The book sold new for about $90. To get your own autographed copy of this now rare collector's item, please send a $120 check (which includes shipping) payable to Robert Zimmerman to

Behind The Black, c/o Robert Zimmerman
P.O.Box 1262
Cortaro, AZ 85652

"Useful to space buffs and generalists, comprehensive but readable, Bob Zimmerman's Encyclopedia belongs front and center on everyone's bookshelf." -- Mike Collins, Apollo 11 astronaut


"The Chronological Encylopedia of Discoveries in Space is no passionless compendium of information. Robert Zimmerman's fact-filled reports, which cover virtually every spacecraft or probe to have ventured into the heavens, relate the scientific and technical adventure of space exploration enthusiastically and with authority." -- American Scientist

Russian mission control has indicated that the debris left over from destruction of a Chinese satellite in 2007 poses a “danger” to the International Space Station. Key quote from a Russian official:

“If the calculations show that the debris is approaching the station at an unacceptably close range, the six astronauts will receive the order to take shelter in the two Russian Soyuz spacecraft which are docked with the ISS.”



  • J Gary Fox

    Seems the plot of the movie Gravity is being reenacted. Only the nationalities have changed!

    In Gravity, it was a missile strike by the Russians on a defunct satellite that caused the debris field and it was a Chinese space station Tiangong, that sheltered Dr. Ryan Stone and provide a capsule for her safe return.

  • You have it backwards. The Chinese anti-sat test on a defunct satellite, which left a lot of junk in orbit that even now is a threat to ISS, occurred prior to the making of Gravity. I think the filmmakers changed it to the Russians and had the Chinese station the savior for political reasons. They figured they could sell more DVDs to China than to Russia, and didn’t want to offend them.

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