Space Debris Is a Problem for Satellites
Space satellites are increasingly required to maneuver to avoid possible collisions and damage with increasing amounts of space debris, according to DPA, citing astronaut and European Space Agency (ESA) coordinator Thomas Reiter.
The situation has worsened significantly in recent decades and is not expected to change in the future, Reiter notes.
"There is a lot of space junk. We prefer this term, not space debris," said an astronaut at an entrepreneur forum in Bremen.
About 8,000 satellites have been launched since the beginning of the space age, 1800 of which are still active. Many of them has already entered the earth's atmosphere again.
Over the next five to six years, more than 50,000 new satellites are expected to launch in space.
"This is many times more than in the entire space age. As space infrastructure is concerned, adequate measures are urgently needed to tackle the problem - something ESA is striving for," says Thomas Reiter.