Originally posted by CaptainBeno
Funny how it always goes blank when "something" comes into view hey? I guess it's a WTF? Panic moment.
Question: We are always told and shown information about the amount of crap "floating" in space. We have all seen the simulations of the amount of
space junk up there. But here is my question. Earth is huge (Compared to space junk) the gravitational pull on that junk would be immense? Why would
it not fall to Earth and burn up as does most things eventually. I understand the ISS has to gain altitude every now and then (when a relief/trash
rocket comes as I understand it) If this is the case it is losing altitude, so why doesn't junk?
What if all those dots we see on the supposed simulations were in fact an excuse for junk (i.e. lies) or even other craft?....UFO's
Surely junk would fall...........right? Or am I having a thick moment?
Don't sell yourself short -- you're looking for the path to enlightenment. You recognize you need it, and that it exists. So you're practically
You are having a moment of great clarity, not thickness. This is the way to understanding.
After years of miscommunications with my non-space-geek friends I finally -- talk about thick!! -- realized that what I'd gotten used to operating
in, in Mission Control, was quite literally unearthly. Motion and illumination was counter-intuitive to ground experience. Gravity sucked, but photons
Pictures of astronauts on the Moon really DID 'look funny', because -- it was not on Earth. A billion years of earthside evolution had trained our
interpretive wetware to START with assumptions that suddenly, in space, were no longer true.
I've tried to describe some of these differences in my '99 FAQs' on my space folklore page on my home page -- see signature.
Nothing 'floats' in space, it only remains out of Earth's clutches by tremendous horizontal speed, quite literally falling 'over the horizon' as
each piece curves 'down', but the surface of the round Earth falls away beneath it. So it doesn't hit.
Air drag sucks energy from satellites, but the higher you are, the thinner the air. A satellite at 200 miles might decay in a few years. At 400, a few
decades, and at 1000, centuries. We keep ISS just at the edge of the atmosphere first, to make it easier for ships from Earth to reach it, and second,
to keep our heads down as we pass just below the Van Allen radiation belts.
I don't think any of the dots on shuttle youtube videos are the same dots on the space debris cloud simulations -- reasons explained in the 99 FAQs.
But stuff is coming off spacecraft all the time, and since it has velocity similar to the originating source, it follows much the same path.
Stuff coming off -- that's an entirely complete reason to ALWAYS keep an eye open for outside stuff. Vehicle breakdowns have been overlooked in the
past when crew/TV didn't spot important visual clues. Or it could be signs of somebody else's vehicles -- first suspects, Earth nations, but other
origins can't be ruled out.
So looking, and then filtering out the 'background noise', really is important.
Suggestions on improvements/additions to the 99 FAQs would be greatly appreciated.