back to article Happy Satellite Collision Day! It is 10 years since Russia and Iridium got too close for comfort

As Elon Musk crowed over the performance of SpaceX's Raptor engine and Northrop Grumman's Cygnus departed the International Space Station (ISS), debris watchers were ruing the 10th anniversary of the first accidental hypervelocity satellite collision. On 10 February 2009, a 950kg Russian military satellite smacked into an …

  1. OssianScotland
    Flame

    Rubbish....

    Burning up rubbish? Will nobody think of the <group of choice>? Shirley it should all be recycled - that's what the council keep telling me, anyway

    1. Snowy
      Facepalm

      Re: Rubbish....

      Aye because the last thing we need in the upper atmosphere is more pollution.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Rubbish....

        "<group of choice>"

        Aye because the last thing we need in the upper atmosphere is more Communism.

      2. paulll

        Re: Rubbish....

        It's not that hard. You have one freighter for your metals (make sure to rinse cans out in the space bog!), one for glass, one for plastics, and one for paper (NOT corrugated cardboard, though). What's that? Any benefit negated by the fuel costs of transporting it all? pfft. Look. It's not that hard. You have one freighter for ,,,

  2. whoseyourdaddy

    I think that 5.5 tons of trash vaporizing in the upper atmosphere compares quite favorably to the tons of coal burned in a fraction of a second to generate electricity for Trump Properties to be quite favorable.

    Besides, calculating the rocket thrust needed to keep that capsule from catching a wind burst and flattening Mumbai to be quite... impractical..

    1. Big John Silver badge

      I was curious about this idea that coal is used to benefit Trump, so I looked it up.

      The U.S. burns 649 megatons per year.

      India burns 953 megatons per year.

      China burns 3,607 megatons per year.

      All others are much less than the U.S.

      If we're really worried about the coal burning that President Trump is supporting, I suggest that we first look at the elephant in the room: China. Or doesn't that really matter?

      https://yearbook.enerdata.net/coal-lignite/coal-world-consumption-data.html

      1. Francis Boyle Silver badge

        At least China is trying to do something about it*

        Trump not so much.

        *15 nuclear plants under construction and it's looking like they may be the ones to crack fusion.

        1. Big John Silver badge
          Joke

          Re: At least China is trying to do something about it*

          > "Trump not so much."

          Not so much what? Not enough new nuclear capacity in the US? How is that Trump's fault? My faulty memory is telling me that the left strongly agitated to stop all of that many years ago, and pretty much killed the nuke construction industry. It's been dead ever since. Is the Mighty Trump expected to have already upped the US nuke plant numbers from a dead stop, on top of his other strong actions on taxes and border enforcement?

          Give the guy a break! He can't be expected to perform miracles daily. Altho.. I would not be surprised if Trump was able to get at least a 'conversation' started about the subject, say in his second term, perhaps?

          Hmmm, I'm not sure the average young Democrat even knows what nuke plants are, these days. What if we pull the old switcheroo, and rename to something nice sounding? That would short circuit any potential protests before they start!

          I know! "Strong force" energy! (Okay, it's really the weak force, so sue me.) The point is, StrongForce™ brand energy sounds great. I'd have complete confidence if I was using THAT stuff!

          1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

            Re: At least China is trying to do something about it*

            "Give the guy a break! He can't be expected to perform miracles daily. Altho.. I would not be surprised if Trump was able to get at least a 'conversation' started about the subject, say in his second term, perhaps?"

            Is this the same Trump who campaigned on reversing the pollution controls and called for the ramping up of coal production or are you talking about some other Trump?

            1. Big John Silver badge

              Re: At least China is trying to do something about it*

              > "Is this the same Trump who campaigned on reversing the pollution controls..."

              So, a sort of "Make Coal Dirty Again" campaign promise? Funny, I can't remember Trump promising that, but If you think that's what he did then I guess I must have missed it somehow.

              1. Ochib

                Re: At least China is trying to do something about it*

                "So, a sort of "Make Coal Dirty Again" campaign promise? Funny, I can't remember Trump promising that, but If you think that's what he did then I guess I must have missed it somehow."

                He may not of promised that, but let us look at what he has done

                1) Trump rolls back climate change rule that restricted new coal plants (https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/dec/06/trump-rolls-back-climate-change-rule-that-restricted-new-coal-plants)

                2) Trump administration to cut air pollution from heavy-duty trucks (https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/nov/13/epa-new-heavy-duty-truck-pollution-rule-nitrogen-oxide)

                3) Trump administration rolls back methane pollution rule despite harmful health impacts (https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/sep/18/epa-methane-pollution-rule-rolled-back-health-warning)

              2. JJKing Bronze badge
                Facepalm

                Re: At least China is trying to do something about it*

                Isn't Spanky the same clown who thought you just needed to wash the coal with water to make it clean coal? He has the IQ of road kill but he has the best words, you know, like covfefe.

              3. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

                Re: At least China is trying to do something about it*

                "I guess I must have missed it somehow."

                First, I didn't say he promised, I said he campaigned. He most definitely DID say he would reverse the decline in the coal industry.

                Google for these words:

                trump's campaign rhetoric coal

                then choose a link to your favoured press outlet.

                I'm guessing you won't trust links to CNN or the Washington Post.

                1. Big John Silver badge

                  Re: At least China is trying to do something about it*

                  > "First, I didn't say he promised, I said he campaigned. He most definitely DID say he would reverse the decline in the coal industry."

                  JB, campaigns are made out of promises, aren't they? But let that go.

                  The previous administration placed government restrictions on the coal industry, that's what was killing it. These restrictions appeared to be whatever it took to kill coal-fired energy generation. That goal was explicitly stated by Obama and others, several times. Trump campaigned to end that Obama policy.

                  I guess the problem here is that you actually consider CO2 to be a true pollutant, no different than SO2 and other poisons, when in reality it's an essential organic gas that underpins all life on Earth. And, it's in short supply these days. And that warming thing appears to be not a happening thing.

                  I assure you that not all of us buy the "CO2 is a pollutant" idea like you, so we don't view Trump as having campaigned to "increase pollution." If you can't understand this, you will never understand why Trump has supporters.

          2. JJKing Bronze badge
            Thumb Up

            Re: At least China is trying to do something about it*

            Give the guy a break!

            Yeah, preferably his neck.

      2. JJKing Bronze badge
        IT Angle

        BJ, I would never have accused you of being an elephant but the Orange Idiot on the other hand is a different story.

  3. DWRandolph

    A bit of .. irony? One section bemoaning collisions and the danger of orbital debris. Then no comment on sustainability of clean orbits as swarms of micro-satellites are released.

    1. stiine
      FAIL

      built-in decay

      That's because when they expire, they're designed to de-orbit.

  4. 89724102172714182892114I7551670349743096734346773478647892349863592355648544996312855148587659264921

    There are more bars under pressure in Uranus

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Trumped up charge.

    Perhaps it was a secret Russian test of their satellite interception technology.

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