NASA revealed Tuesday that last April the Fermi Gamma-Ray Telescope barely avoided a collision with an abandoned Russian satellite.


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NASA revealed Tuesday that last April the Fermi Gamma-Ray Telescope barely avoided a collision with an abandoned Russian satellite.

Fermi mission scientists first learned of the space collision threat on March 29, 2012 when they received a notice that the space telescope and Cosmos 1805 would miss each other by just 700 feet (213.4 meters). The mission team monitored the situation over the next day and it became clear that the two spacecraft, traveling in different orbits, would zip through the same point in space within 30 milliseconds of one another, NASA officials said.

They used Fermi’s thrusters to shift its orbit enough so the two spacecraft missed each other by 6 miles.

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