Engineers and scientists all over the world are working to solve the space debris problem, but the orbital debris is still only increasing. The growth of the orbital debris is indicated in the annual report published by the European Space Agency.
Once near-Earth space was free from human-made objects, but the launch of the first satellite in 1957 was the beginning not only of the era of astronautics, but also the era of pollution of our planet’s orbit with man-made debris. The scale of the problem is growing, so the leading space powers are taking measures to combat it, but the debris in orbit, however, is becoming more and more – this is due to the very nature of space debris, individual fragments of which collide with each other and produce even more parts.
“Debris in space is first and foremost dangerous to the astronautics that produce it. Today there are so many garbage objects in the Earth’s orbit that the International Space Station has to maneuver constantly to avoid collisions. Expensive satellites break down due to collision with orbital debris and turn into it themselves. It causes serious economic damage,” ESA representatives say.
Not only collisions, but also fuel cell explosions of old satellites cause more garbage in near-Earth space. The latter factor, as determined by ESA, will produce even more dangerous fragments than collisions.