A very high-risk space collision or the so-called Kessler Syndrome could happen this Thursday, Oct. 15. Experts said that a Russian satellite, which is already not functioning, and a Chinese rocket would hit each other at around 8:56 p.m. ET.
According to Fox News' latest report, Leolabs, a satellite-tracking company, the defunct space objects could come within 39 feet from each other. Although they are quite far away from one another, researchers said that there's still a 10% chance they'll collide.
1/ This event continues to be very high risk and will likely stay this way through the time of closest approach. Our system generates new conjunction reports 6-8x per day on this event with new observation data each time. pic.twitter.com/d3tRbcV2P0 — LeoLabs, Inc. (@LeoLabs_Space) October 14, 2020
"This event continues to be very high risk and will likely stay this way through the time of closest approach," said the company in a tweet.
"Our system generates new conjunction reports 6-8x per day on this event with new observation data each time," added Leolabs.
The predicted close approach on Oct 16 involves a Soviet Parus navigation satellite and a Chinese rocket stage. Here is the Parus. It's a big satellite, about 800 kg, 2 metres in dia and it has a 17 metre long gravity gradient boom. pic.twitter.com/UezRGw3TOn — Jonathan McDowell (@planet4589) October 14, 2020
Jonathan MacDowell, a Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics' astrophysicist, said that the defunct Russian satellite called Kosmos 2004 was launched in 1989.
The collision would create dangerous space debris
According to Business Insider's latest report, the possible collision would not affect the people on Earth since the space objects are 991 kilometers or 616 miles away from the planet.
However, if they do hit each other, researchers said that the crash would create space debris that could cause major problems.
Future satellites will have a problem
Dan Ceperley, the CEO of LeoLabs, told Business Insider that the debris that the collision will create could affect future satellites that are going out into upper low-Earth orbit.
On the other hand, scientists at The Aerospace Corporation also calculated the chance of the impact. The agency said that collision only has a 1-in-250,000,000 chance.
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Written by: Giuliano de Leon.