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No Way Back Space Debris

Space pollution poses existential threat

When human beings started to explore outer space, they got in the habit of leaving behind space junk, the remains of old satellites or bits of space vessels that had to be discarded on their flights home. Progressively, this man-made orbital debris has formed a ring of trash flying around Earth at high speed. Collisions have already occurred: these could have devastating consequences for the world’s economy, and even peace.

Space junk. Still taken from RTD documentary No Way Back Space Debris.
Parts of old spacecraft are strewn all over space. The current phase of space exploration must involve cleaning up this hazardous cosmic junk yard.

RTD meets NASA expert Don Kessler, who founded the agency’s Orbital Debris Program Office, Roscosmos experts and Russian ISS cosmonaut Anton Shkaplerov to learn more about the threat posed by space debris, and to find out whether the junk can just be avoided, or needs to be tidied up.