With the number of satellites in Earth’s orbit increasing drastically, Exton-based Analytical Graphics, Inc. has emphasized the growing need for a dedicated tracking and oversight body, writes Christian Davenport for The Washington Post.
According to AGI, which builds software to track spacecraft and debris in space, around 50,000 satellites could be launched into orbit over the next decade, compared to the few thousand in operation today.
This could create even bigger potential for collisions, especially considering the junk that is already floating up there. This includes around 22,000 pieces of debris larger than about four inches and nearly one million larger than a half-inch that scientists estimate currently exist in orbit.
The Pentagon has been using tracking software to track space debris and satellites for the last several decades. However, it is no longer able to handle the ever increasing amount of objects and issue warnings of possible collisions.
“It was a great system 30 years ago, and it did the job it was designed to do,” said Paul Graziani, AGI’s CEO. “However, the problem has moved on over the decades to be a much more difficult problem than the system was designed to handle.”
Read more about Analytical Graphics, Inc. in The Washington Post here.
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