Only one satellite has been ever been destroyed by a meteor, the European Space Agency’s Olympus in 1993. If two satellites collide who’s insurance pays, and do you have to overtake on the right in space. Whatever road rules they’re using in space it’s working. With well over 8,000 satellites whirling around the planet - all launched since 1957 – there has ever only been one hit by a meteor and only one collision between two satellites. With the added complication that some satellites travel at very high speed -26,00km/h- while others don’t travel at all – they are in geo-stationary orbits - it is amazing that more satellites haven’t met an early demise. The satellite Olympus was hit by debris from the Perseid shower, a meteor shower caused by the annual visit of comet 109P/Swift-Tuttle passing close to the earth. The satellite would normally have been moved out of danger but had already been partially disabled. The fact that there aren’t more satellite incidents is completely down to the satellites being moved to avoid any known dangers, such as meteor showers. Ground control of satellites by NORAD and other montioring stations is the only defence for satellites, until the get theyre own lasers anyway.
Diana Detaux | Filed under: Astronomy, Cankler, Diana Detox, Funkinwagnill | Tags: American Astronomical Society, astronomy, Australian Astronomical Observatory, comet 109P Swift-Tuttle, Diana Detox, European Space Agency, Funkinwagnill, NORAD, Olympus | Comments Off