Since this “political football known as sequester” we need someone who wants to tame the new frontier, to “boldly go….” Ok enough..
Calling Bill Gates, or any of you other billionaires out there with nothing to spend your money on…. I have a proposition for you! Read on to hear my plan…
One year ago, in April, we just about lost a $960.000.000 telescope to a defunct Russian spy satellite. Quick thinking on the part of several people managed to save our telescope however; the risk remains and it is not getting better, but worse.
With each and every launch, other “stuff” is left in space to orbit, and slowly fall back to earth. Depending upon the altitude and velocity, it could take weeks, years, decades or centuries for the orbit to decay enough for the earth’s gravity to pull it back down.
The good news is that things fall back to earth often and usually burn up during the re-entry process , falling harmlessly into the ocean or some other body of water, the Canadian Wilderness or the Australian outback. This is just about a verbatim statement from “those who know.” I for one am glad that these things only fall where people aren’t; pretty clever of them to arrange that.
Truth be told, (you know how I like truth) this claim is made because 70% of the earth is covered with water of one kind or another. If you have ever gambled you know that it is all about the odds, which are derived from percentages of one thing or another.
By last estimates there are 23,000 pieces of space junk and about 1500 satellites give or take the dozens that neither country will admit to. That means that there are about 24,500 objects up there with no planned way of removing them safely. I think that we actually have an “end of life” policy created for ours, if the thing is still functional.
The hazards are increasing exponentially with each and every launch and of course should two satellites collide as they did in 2009 at hyper speeds, lots of space junk gets released into orbit. The collision between Iriduim 33 and Kosmos 255 was not the only collision in space. In fact there have been 8 known high speed collisions and several minor collisions. Someone gets paid to keep up with each and every little thing up there. How well do you think they do their job?
As of yet, there are no Universal treaties as to who does what in space; so the problem continues to get worse. The lawmakers are too concerned about anything but what they should be, so don’t look for help from any government.
Along come the visionaries…
Well maybe not these folks…
We need some visionaries to come up with a way to reclaim the space junk. Instead of figuring out ways to make a weapon more precise or more lethal, how about working on this problem before it is totally out of hand?
I actually have an idea that might work. Scientist have proposed building a type of tractor (not like the one on Green Acres) but a “Space Tractor” to snag or deflect an asteroid causing its trajectory to change enough to save the earth.
What if…we tested that theory on some space junk? What if…. we slowed the orbit of some space junk down enough so its orbit would decay at a more rapid rate, and maybe, just maybe with some practice, we could manage where and when it would fall, not using the current Vegas method of science, but real science. Instead of trying to deflect an asteroid first, start out with something small and closer to home like, a defunct satellite. One could actually make a business out of it, and charge Millions! Why does it take a science fiction writer to come up with this stuff? Maybe if the space station has enough mass they could figure out a way to test the theory with it. It is already up there, with a crew and everything!
No, Ok well how about this?
If any of you happen to know Michio Kaku; or the guy that demoted Pluto, or some other notable “scientist,” forward this to them. If you know Bill, give him my best and show this too him but, sell it as the newest form of software development. Someone would have to write the stuff to control this thing, right?. I would love to hear why it would not work or why it is not a good idea. Personally, I think if the nation(s) could focus on something else, other than politics, it would be a good thing. If any of you scientist need any more “out of the box thinking”…call me….phone is write here…waiting….
-Best to you and those that you care about.