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Removing space junk: Dealing with celestial scrap –

Plans to clean up orbits around Earth are being hatched in an effort to deal with space junk.



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Human beings are messy. They tend to leave rubbish behind them wherever they goand to expect someone else to clear that rubbish up. This is true even in outer space. The problem of orbiting debris, and the concomitant risk of it colliding with and damaging an active and probably expensive satellite, has been around for a while. But it is rapidly getting worse. In the past three years, the number of times such bits of junk have almost hit operating satellites has roughly doubled.
That, at least,…

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