Home / Research / Satellites and space junk

Satellites and space junk

space 2 spaceProf. Dr. M. Hafiz Rafique

Satellite are man-made bodies which revolve around the earth or any other planet. A natural satellite is called moon and our planet earth has only one moon.The first man-made satellite, the Sputnik I, was sent into space by Soviet Union in 1957. Artificial satellites are blasted into space using rockets and space vehicles and they revolve around the earth indifferent internationally defined orbits. A rocket is a kind of spacecraft or missile that obtains thrust from a rocket engine to move forward at a very high speed by expelling its exhaust in the backward direction obeying Newton’s third law of motion.Satellites are fitted with many computer-controlled systems.

Dr Hafiz Rafique
Dr Hafiz Rafique

Satellites are launched in space for many useful purposes so they are of different types and sizes. For example, weather satellites, communication satellites, research satellites, navigation satellites, military satellites etc. They rotate around the earth in different orbits with different speeds depending upon the purpose for which they are launched. Satellites can be dived into different classes such as geostationary orbit satellites, low earth orbit satellites and polar orbit satellites etc.

According to a report, more than 70 satellites are launched in space every year in various orbits for useful purposes. They are disposed of when they are no longer needed or they complete their life. Satellites are never designed to be brought back down to the earth. These disposed of satellites are called space junk or space debris. There is a high risk of collisions between the functioning satellites due to this space junk and it is an alarming factor for the scientists to clear this mess from the upper space. If we stop launching satellites from now on, even then it can take a lot of time to free space from this junk.
Space junk is increasing every year and as a result the risk of the collisions for functioning satellite is increasing as well. Apart from the abandoned satellites, there are also many other small metal objects in space that are revolving around the earth and are a part of the space debris. European Space Agency (ESA) claims that about 22,000 lumps of metals having size bigger than that of a coffee mug are wandering in space and over 170 million metal pieces of size 1cm are also flying in space.
Although the research is in its early stage, scientists are working hard to clear this space rubbish and want to make space litter-free. There are some ideas under consideration to get rid of this space junk. Lasers can be used to destroy these metal pieces as well as harpoons or nets can be used to catch the pieces of junk to make space rubbish-free.

(The writer is Punjab University Physics Department Chairman and Member Syndicate on Associate Professor’s seat. He can be reached at: hafizrafique42b1@hotmail.com)

Comment Using Facebook

Check Also

PU awards four PhD degrees

Staff Report LAHORE: (Sunday, December 20, 2020): Punjab University has awarded four PhD degrees to …


  1. 776712 315694An intriguing discussion is worth comment. Im positive that you just write regarding this subject, may possibly possibly not be considered a taboo topic but typically persons are too small to communicate on such topics. To one more. Cheers 751042

  2. 885123 651006Empathetic for your monstrous inspect, in addition Im just seriously very good as an alternative to Zune, and consequently optimism them, together with the very very good critical reviews some other players have documented, will let you determine whether it does not take proper choice for you. 591994

  3. 232875 328832Simply a smiling visitor here to share the enjoy (:, btw excellent pattern . 993591

  4. 136175 799242There is numerous separate years Los angeles Weight reduction eating program with each a person is a necessity. The pioneer part can be your original getting rid of belonging towards the extra pounds. la weight loss 796053

  5. 766330 260341I like this post quite significantly. I will surely be back. Hope that I can go via far more insightful posts then. Will likely be sharing your wisdom with all of my friends! 750116

  6. 941073 335698I take excellent pleasure in reading articles with quality content material. This article is 1 such writing that I can appreciate. Keep up the excellent work. 777595

  7. 531940 792162Hi. Cool write-up. There is actually a issue with the web internet site in firefox, and you might want to test this The browser may be the marketplace leader and a huge portion of folks will miss your exceptional writing due to this difficulty. 910351

  8. 654502 70178hello admin, your website pages pattern is simple and clean and i like it. Your articles are remarkable. Remember to maintain up the great work. Greets.. 49217

  9. 18588 532894Cool post thanks! We think your articles are fantastic and hope more soon. We enjoy anything to do with word games/word play. 339506

  10. 63636 748323I believe one of your commercials caused my internet browser to resize, you may well want to put that on your blacklist. 547299

  11. 430728 550775This really is a good weblog. Maintain up all of the function. I too love to weblog. This really is wonderful everybody sharing opinions 410628

  12. 980077 928451Yeah bookmaking this wasnt a high risk determination outstanding post! . 547531

  13. 733017 647718just couldnt leave your internet internet site before suggesting that I truly loved the standard information a person give for your visitors? Is gonna be once again ceaselessly to check up on new posts 772794

  14. 356321 329335Keep up the great piece of function, I read couple of blog posts on this internet site and I believe that your site is real intriguing and has lots of wonderful information. 40767

  15. 489646 225358There is noticeably a bundle comprehend this. I suppose you produced specific good points in functions also. 547018

  16. 423688 179728Hmm is anyone else having troubles with the images on this weblog loading? Im trying to figure out if its a dilemma on my finish or if it is the blog. Any responses would be greatly appreciated. 761012

  17. 987970 625292great post, extremely informative. I wonder why the other experts of this sector do not notice this. You need to continue your writing. Im positive, youve a fantastic readers base already! 557425

  18. 950970 539027thaibaccarat dot com is the best site to study casino games : like baccarat, poker, blackjack and roulette casino 304466

  19. 336830 195226Outstanding publish from specialist also it will probably be a amazing know how to me and thanks really significantly for posting this helpful data with us all. 38446

  20. 925970 142339I respect your piece of function, appreciate it for all the interesting content . 890760

  21. 870707 427438The next time I learn a weblog, I hope that it doesnt disappoint me as much as this 1. I mean, I do know it was my choice to read, even so I actually thought youd have something attention-grabbing to say. All I hear is really a bunch of whining about something which you could fix for those that werent too busy in search of attention. 279613

  22. 512859 403658Deference to op , some superb selective information . 699761

  23. 451901 906808You developed some decent points there. I looked online for the concern and located a lot of people may go as properly as utilizing your internet website. 655267

  24. 183031 663894It shows how you comprehend this topic. Added this page, is for a lot more. 466760