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Satellite collision narrowly missed

Posted on Thursday, 2 May, 2013 | Comment icon 4 comments | News tip by: Waspie_Dwarf

Image credit: NASA

NASA's Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope narrowly avoids destruction in an orbital near-miss.

The dangers of space debris have re-asserted themselves this week after it was revealed that last year the Fermi Space Telescope came within 700ft of a defunct Cold-War spy satellite, a close call for the space observatory. NASA's Robotic Conjunction Assessment Risk Analysis team routinely analyzes the orbital paths of satellites and other objects to predict potential collisions.

In 2009 such a disaster became a reality when an active Iridium 33 communications satellite collided with a dead Russian communications satellite, destroying both objects and leaving a trail of debris behind.

"NASA scientists don't often learn that their spacecraft is at risk of crashing into another satellite."

  View: Full article |  Source: NASA

  Discuss: View comments (4)


Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #1 Posted by Waspie_Dwarf on 1 May, 2013, 23:13
On March 29, 2012, the science team for NASA's Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope learned that a defunct Cold-War spy satellite would pass too close for comfort on April 4. The two spacecraft were expected to occupy the same point in space within 30 milliseconds of each other, which meant that Fermi had to get out of the way. Credit: NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center
Comment icon #2 Posted by pallidin on 2 May, 2013, 21:16
Wow, that was close.
Comment icon #3 Posted by mysticwerewolf on 16 May, 2013, 22:55
I wish that there was some way to collect all that junk and recycle it. oh well perhaps at some point in the far future
Comment icon #4 Posted by GirlfromOz on 18 May, 2013, 14:59
We dodged a bullet.

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