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Crowded Space: The Problem of Orbital Debris

In 2001, the third stage of a Delta 2 rocket re-entered the atmosphere over the Middle East. The titanium motor casing, weighing about 70 kg, landed in Saudi Arabia about 240 km from the capital of Riyadh.

In 2001, the third stage of a Delta 2 rocket re-entered the atmosphere over the Middle East. The titanium motor casing, weighing about 70 kg, landed in Saudi Arabia about 240 km from the capital of Riyadh.

By Kerrie Dougherty

The orbiting detritus of humanity’s exploration and exploitation of space poses a growing threat to operational space systems and crewed spaceflight activities.

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