Astronautas en estación espacial esquivan basura orbital.

La Estación Espacial Internacional acaba de esquivar un trozo de basura en órbita que se mueve rápidamente.

Los controladores maniobraron la estación lejos de una posible colisión con escombros  el 22 de septiembre a las 4:19 p.m. (CST). Lo hicieron encendiendo los propulsores de una nave espacial de carga que está acoplada al módulo de servicio Zvezda del laboratorio en órbita, dijeron funcionarios de la NASA.

Foto: Pixabay.

Los tres astronautas que viven actualmente a bordo de la estación, Chris Cassidy de la NASA y los cosmonautas Anatoli Ivanishin e Ivan Vagner, se refugiaron en el segmento ruso de la estación durante la maniobra para estar más cerca de su nave espacial Soyuz, según la NASA.

Esto se hizo por precaución. En ningún momento estuvo la tripulación en peligro.

La estadía del trío cerca de la nave Soyuz, que los traerá de regreso a la Tierra el próximo mes, fue bastante breve.

La basura espacial es un problema creciente en la órbita terrestre. Casi 129 millones de piezas de escombros están zumbando alrededor de nuestro planeta en este momento, de las cuales aproximadamente 34 mil tienen más de 10 centímetros de ancho, según estimaciones de la Agencia Espacial Europea.

Foto: Pixabay.

La Estación Espacial Internacional se encuentra a 400 kilómetros de altura. Ahí el material gira alrededor de la Tierra a aproximadamente a 28 mil 200 kilómetros por hora,  tan rápido que una colisión con incluso un pequeño fragmento de escombros podría causar graves daños al laboratorio en órbita.

De ahí la acción evasiva. Las maniobras para esquivar basura están lejos de ser desconocidas para el laboratorio en órbita. La estación ha hecho tres de esos movimientos solo en 2020, dijo Bridenstine hoy en otro tweet, enfatizando que ¡los escombros están empeorando!

En enero de 2012, los controladores trasladaron la estación para evitar una posible colisión con un pedazo de basura generado por una prueba antisatélite china de 2007 muy criticada.

Foto: Pixabay.

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