45 years of space garbage

space debris graphicAt a speed of roughly 17,500 miles/hour, a speck of paint can destroy and kill.

This is a NASA graphic of current orbital debris.

The International Space Station has been moved into a different orbit to protect it against hundreds of chunks of junk created by China’s recent anti-satellite test — over 500 “large fragments” from the blast.

[click the picture for space junk link]

Update: The graphic by NASA is correct but the 500 large pieces of debris is false. It seems a reporter incorrectly translated a feed from Russia and mis-reported the facts.

Update: Taking out the trash is no simple chore on the International Space Station, where some junk is carefully hurled into the Earth’s atmosphere to burn. In space, trash can’t go to the curb