Thursday 14 November 2019

Space Station lasers to shoot down junk in orbit

The International Space Station
The International Space Station

Andrew Griffin

Scientists want to fit huge lasers to the International Space Station (ISS) and use them to blast away the estimated 3,000 tons of space debris that flies around the Earth and could be putting it in danger.

The plan - proposed by researchers from the Riken Institute in Japan - would see the Extreme Universe Space Observatory telescope that is fitted to the ISS converted into a tool for spotting space debris. When that spots a piece of dangerous debris, a laser would be used to fire at bits of space junk until it goes out of orbit and burns up as it goes back towards the Earth.

The plan is one of a number of proposals for dealing with the junk.

Irish Independent

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