A New Satellite Has Captured Space Junk For The First Time

Scientific Space Exploration News Space debris, or space junk, will cause several issues for future space flight endeavors. The leftover pieces of previous space missions that have yet to...

Scientific Space Exploration News

Space debris, or space junk, will cause several issues for future space flight endeavors. The leftover pieces of previous space missions that have yet to reenter earth’s atmosphere can orbit at incredibly fast speeds and impacts to functioning spacecraft could be devastating.

The more crafts and satellites in space, the greater the risk of some sort of accident involving debris, and researchers say we currently have far too much of it floating around. Recently, a major development occurred when a new satellite fired a net in orbit to capture a piece of junk travelling at over 17,000 mph. This marks the first use of this technology that could resolve the junk problem.

The device was created by the University of Surrey, and named it the RemoveDEBRIS. This experimental creation was launched on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket, and closely examined by its engineers during the experimental test run, which took six years to get to this point.

When the net deployed and snagged the junk, applause erupted from the researchers watching. A video of this took several high quality images and revealed the intricacy of the net mechanism. The device will drag the debris into the atmosphere, where it will burn up upon reentry.

Follow @TwistityNews