The number of satellites and space debris orbiting the Earth decreased during the IV quarter. 2014 with 16,994 to 16,906 objects,
reported in the quarterly report by NASA on the situation in near space at the end of the update directory US Strategic Command
Most objects in orbit is of Russian origin (6385 pieces, satellites and debris). In second place the United States - 5028, China - 3785.
For the IV quarter. 2014 in orbit 46 satellites and 41 associated facilities. Thus, the amount of space debris naturally decreased by approximately 200 facilities.
However, the problem remains. In the catalog the US Strategic Command lists only objects with a diameter greater than 10 cm. If we consider the objects larger than 1 cm, the number more than 300 000 units
. Faced with a module of the ISS at a speed of 25,000 km / h, this piece is quite able to make a dent in the skin or damage the fragment of solar panels. What can we say, if the movie gets into the astronaut suit (although the probability of this is negligible).
The threat is not as serious, but it must be taken into account. For example, in 2009 after an accidental clash of Russian and American military satellite communications satellite into space an influx of 2,000 pieces. The illustration shows the location of the fragments in 50 minutes after the collision.
International Space Station had to maneuver
, to avoid fragments (these events formed the basis of the idea of the plot film "Gravity»).
By the way, ISS warned of the need to maneuver if there is a possibility of collision with an object of garbage, превышающая 1 out of 100,000
Two years earlier, China intentionally blew his satellite in orbit
for testing missiles. This added another 3,000 fragments to the total number of garbage.
So while in the IV quarter. In 2014 the number of large objects in orbit decreased by 88 units, but any stupidity or PE can greatly damage statistics and pose a threat to existing orbiters.