India’s ‘terrible’ satellite destruction test created space debris, put ISS in danger: NASA

India's recent move to prove itself as one of world’s advanced space powers seems to have backfired as after shooti
Published April 3, 2019

India's recent move to prove itself as one of world’s advanced space powers seems to have backfired as after shooting down a satellite with a missile to demonstrate its defense capabilities, NASA has criticized the test saying it increased space debris and also put International Space Station at risk.

Calling the Indian satellite test a ‘terrible, terrible thing’, NASA administrator Jim Bridenstine said in a recently held meeting with NASA employees that the test had scattered over 400 pieces into various orbits, hence, endangering the ISS and other emplacements.

The test, as per Tech Crunch, took place last week and demonstrated an Indian rocket launched to an altitude of about 300km, where it struck and destroyed a previously place satellite. Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi at that time proudly said that the test ‘shows the remarkable dexterity of India’s outstanding scientists and the success of our space program’.

However, this test has raised concerns from around the world, with some criticizing the act as the step towards the militarization of space, while others also offered a more practical warning. Bridenstine said, “Intentionally creating orbital debris fields is not compatible with human spaceflight.”

Moreover, AFP reported, as a result of the Indian test, the risk of collision with the ISS too has increased by 44% over 10 days, Bridenstine warned. “It’s unacceptable and NASA needs to be very clear about what its impact to us is.”

“We have identified 400 pieces of orbital debris from that one event. What we are tracking right now, objects big enough to track, we’re talking about 10 centimeters or bigger, about 60 pieces have been tracked. Of those 60, we know that 24 of them are going above the apogee of the International Space Station,” he added.

Though most of the debris will burn up in the atmosphere soon, the entire things still sets up a very bad example. Bridenstine expressed, “When one country does it, then other countries feel like they have to do it, as well.”

Copyright Business Recorder, 2019


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