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Space junk problem discussed

English.news.cn   2014-05-12 14:22:40

BEIJING, May 12 (Xinhuanet) -- Experts from the U.S. Department of Defense, Federal Aviation Authority and many others presented their argument before the U.S House of Representatives on the problem of orbital debris or space junk lately.

They discussed the growing threat of space junks, which totals to almost half a million, surrounding Earth.

Dealing with the increase in orbital debris will not be easy. Some astronauts shared how the space junks interfered with their previous missions.

"During my two spaceflights, we flew upside down and backwards to prevent our space shuttle windows from being hit by debris strikes," former NASA astronaut George Zamka said.

The Joint Functional Component Command for Space (JFCC-Space) which monitors the debris estimated 23,000 debris on the low-orbit and 500,000 pieces of space junks traveling at a speed of 17,000 mph. Such speed is capable of damaging a satellite or spacecraft.

NASA, for the meantime, has developed plans to avoid the space junks. Their game plan is to predict the path of the junks and maneuver the spacecraft 30 hours before the expected time to prevent collision.

(Agencies)

Editor: Yamei Wang
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