Recall that a Proton-M, which was supposed to deliver in orbit two satellites, could not do so because of problems in the upper stage. Accident occurred at the beginning of August, and has since drifted upper stage in low-Earth orbit. But on August 16 he exploded, creating a cloud of 500 fragments.
According to experts, this is one of the largest clouds of debris generated in recent years. And, theoretically, in the future, this debris can collide with the International Space Station.
So far, the plant itself is not alert and did not change the orbit, but the cloud is taken under special control in the case of the slightest chance of crossing paths, will be held emergency avoidance maneuvers. It should be noted that now the station has to dodge debris, more and more often.
The fact that the space near Earth space debris just overrun, everyone knows. According to conservative estimations of experts, is now in orbit about 21,000 fragments of different satellites.
And this is only the most dangerous of them, whose dimensions exceed 10 centimeters, and how many flies smaller parts; no one is taken to say. And yet, the speed at which they move in space makes them no less dangerous than bullets. Even a small piece of metal flying at a speed of several kilometers per second, can cause enormous damage. So the ISS and can really serious danger and the need to track the movement of debris important than ever.