Science News Desk – US space agency NASA has said that the International Space Station had to be ‘pushed’ to avoid colliding with a satellite. The engines continued to run for more than six minutes. To avoid satellite collisions, the station had to raise its orbit slightly. The space agency wrote in a blogpost, ‘Early on Monday, the orbital station came in the way of a satellite orbiting the Earth.
NASA said in its blog post, ‘The docked ISS Progress 83 resupply ship fired its engine for about six minutes. With this, the class of the station can be raised slightly. According to Sandra Jones from NASA’s Johnson Space Center, the satellite appears to be an Argentine Earth-observer satellite slated to launch in 2020, Space.com reports.
In a tweet, astrophysicist Dr. Jonathan McDowell of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics narrowed down the possible candidates to NUSAT-17, taking into account the satellite’s orbital decay. The report states that Nusat-17 is one of ten commercial observation satellites that were launched in 2020 and are operated by geospatial data company Satlogic. McDowell said, “The NuSat satellite is one of several satellites whose orbits are gradually encroaching on the orbit of the ISS.
According to a report released by NASA in December 2022 last year, the ISS has had to fire its thrusters to avoid such collisions 32 times since 1999. Like SpaceX and OneWeb. A near miss between a rocket body and a dead satellite on January 27 showed how close we are to a space disaster, the consequences of which could be catastrophic.