Space junk is a threat to the future of mankind. Old rocket parts, broken satellites, and debris from previous space missions form a circle of 750,000 pieces of debris that orbits the Earth at high speed. Scientists say an “urgent cleanup” is needed to prevent an environmental crisis in space.

NASA has calculated more than 27,000 pieces of debris tracked by the Department of Defense, but most are too small for sensors to detect. Even small pieces like metal bolts or pieces of ships pose a danger to satellites and space missions as they orbit the Earth at speeds of up to 17,500 miles per hour.

Alarming numbers

  • 2,000 satellites are in orbit around the Earth.
  • 3,000 satellites died in Earth’s orbit.
  • 34,000 pieces of space junk larger than 10 centimeters.
  • 128 million pieces of space junk larger than 1 millimeter.
  • 0.01%: risk of collision.
  • 25 ISS debris avoidance drills since 1999.

What’s Left on the Moon

Not only do we leave a lot of space junk in Earth’s orbit, but we also have objects elsewhere, such as on the surface of the Moon.
  • Apollo 15, 16, and 17 lunar trolleys.
  • 54 unexploded probes have crashed or landed on the Moon.
  • 190,000 kg of matter left by humans on the Moon.
  • Spaceships and probes left by different countries on the Moon
  • 1959: Luna 2 (Soviet Union).
  • 1969: Ranger 4 (USA).
  • 1993: The Hit (Japan).
  • 2006: SMART-1 (Europe).
  • 2008: Chandrayaan-1 (India).
  • 2009: Chang’e-1 (China).
  • 2019: Beresheet (Israel).


The International Space Station (ISS) and much of the space industry operate in low Earth orbit at altitudes between 150 km and 2,000 km. Collisions are an ever-present danger. Early on Monday, November 15, 2021, the ISS crew was told to prepare for an escape as debris from a destroyed satellite was flying towards the station. This is not the first time the  space station crew has been warned about space debris.

The ISS is facing many dangers from space junk.

Recently, Russia destroyed one of its own satellites with a rocket to test an anti-satellite missile. More than 1,500 pieces of debris were created when the universe Cosmos 1408 and nearly 10,000 tons of material currently orbiting the planet endangering working satellites. In the face of the rapid development of man-made objects, scientists have urgently called for a proposal to treat low Earth’s orbit as a precious ecosystem.

According to Discovery and Natural History Museum.

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