Space station to move to avoid oncoming junk

Jan 13, 2012

(AP) -- The International Space Station is dodging a softball-sized piece of space junk.

Mission Control told astronauts to fire the station's engines briefly Friday morning to avoid a piece of an old communications satellite.

It will be only the 13th time since 1998 that the station has moved because of debris. Debris travels at such high speed in orbit that it could cause a deadly puncture to the space station.

The last time the station moved was in September. In June, astronauts had to take shelter in the Soyuz escape capsule as debris flew by.

NASA said Thursday that the debris from the private U.S. satellite Iridium was on a path that would have brought it close to the station Friday afternoon, possibly less than a mile.on-pages/station/living/index.html target=-blank>www.nasa.gov/mission-pages/sta… on/living/index.html

Explore further: Space sex geckos at risk as Russia loses control of satellite

not rated yet
add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

NASA eyes debris as Discovery nears space station

Mar 16, 2009

(AP) -- NASA kept close tabs on an old piece of space junk Monday that threatened to come too close to the international space station as the shuttle Discovery raced toward the orbiting outpost for a 220-mile-high ...

NASA says space station safe from debris

Mar 16, 2009

(AP) -- NASA gave the all-clear to the international space station Monday, telling its astronauts they would not need to steer away from an orbiting piece of satellite junk.

Debris threat avoided at space station: NASA

Jul 11, 2011

A piece of Soviet space debris is not likely to collide with the International Space Station after all, and astronauts have moved ahead with restocking the orbiting lab, NASA said Monday. ...

Recommended for you

Biomarkers of the deep

1 hour ago

Tucked away in the southwest corner of Spain is a unique geological site that has fascinated astrobiologists for decades. The Iberian Pyrite Belt (IPB) in Spain's Río Tinto area is the largest known deposit ...

User comments : 0