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 bubbles' may have aided enemy in fatal Afghan battle

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

Getting to the root of the problem in space

12 hours ago

When we go to Mars, will astronauts be able to grow enough food there to maintain a healthy diet? Will they be able to produce food in NASA's Orion spacecraft on the year-long trip to Mars? How about growing ...

The difference between CMEs and solar flares

15 hours ago

This is a question we are often asked: what is the difference between a coronal mass ejection (CME) and a solar flare? We discussed it in a recent astrophoto post, but today NASA put out a video with amazing graphics that explain ...

Scientific instruments of Rosetta's Philae lander

15 hours ago

When traveling to far off lands, one packs carefully. What you carry must be comprehensive but not so much that it is a burden. And once you arrive, you must be prepared to do something extraordinary to make ...

User comments : 0