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(The Verge)   "HEY I'm orbitin' here"   (theverge.com) divider line
    More: Fail, Satellite, Spacecraft, Orbit, SpaceX's Starlink, Space debris, European Space Agency, US Space Force, International Space Station  
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1405 clicks; posted to STEM » on 11 Apr 2021 at 4:26 PM (4 weeks ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook



23 Comments     (+0 »)
View Voting Results: Smartest and Funniest
 
2021-04-11 12:47:57 PM  
pics.filmaffinity.comView Full Size
 
2021-04-11 12:56:35 PM  
Thanks for destroying stellar photography... bastard
 
2021-04-11 2:00:56 PM  
This photo is weirdly without scale.

Fark user imageView Full Size


That whole thing could be six foot high, or sixty. You have to look really closely to see the little cart with wheels and realise that thing is quite big.

Here is the same stack from a different angle.
Fark user imageView Full Size


And it makes sense for Starlink to turn off their auto avoidance system when they know that OneWeb is aware of a conflict and is taking avoiding action. You don't want OneWeb to move their satellite "left" and the automatic Starlink system to move in the same direction!
 
2021-04-11 2:03:05 PM  
the void of any clear international framework for managing active objects in space makes it largely unclear who would be held responsible if a collision actually occurred

My God, the lawyers wouldn't know who to sue.  That could be catastrophic.
 
2021-04-11 2:11:09 PM  
Gravity 2013 Soon to be in real life.

Fark user imageView Full Size
 
2021-04-11 2:23:54 PM  

Tim_In_CT: Gravity 2013 Soon to be in real life.

[Fark user image 850x327]


By the time Elon launches his Mars mission....

Fark user imageView Full Size


And space is getting "crowded", but crowded is relative. Right this second there is one Starlink satellite over Ireland, none over the UK, three over France, two over Germany etc.

Fark user imageView Full Size


So you have three objects the size of a small car in an area the size of France.

Compare that to flights, even with pandemic conditions meaning only a fraction of flights are running.

Fark user imageView Full Size


So this is an issue, but space is big.
 
2021-04-11 2:42:16 PM  
Fark user imageView Full Size
 
2021-04-11 3:18:37 PM  
 
2021-04-11 3:20:15 PM  
There was a farker who just a few weeks ago was dismissing predictions of this exact thing because people didn't understand "how insanely huge low earth orbit is".

Apparently it isn't insanely huge enough after all.

Wonder if he'll pop in here for the double-down.
 
2021-04-11 3:39:56 PM  
But everyday I am hustlin'.
 
2021-04-11 3:43:38 PM  

Carter Pewterschmidt: So this is an issue, but space is big.


Space is big, but airplanes can steer much more easily than satellites can. They also have flight planning to keep them on non-intersecting paths, with TCAS as a backup in case that fails.
 
2021-04-11 4:18:07 PM  

Ivo Shandor: Carter Pewterschmidt: So this is an issue, but space is big.

Space is big, but airplanes can steer much more easily than satellites can. They also have flight planning to keep them on non-intersecting paths, with TCAS as a backup in case that fails.


TCAS is like Starlink's auto avoidance system. And the reason they turned it off is to avoid the sort of incident that happened over Switzerland a few years ago. Middle of the night and the lone controller on duty, having to use an old basic radar because the new one with the bells and whistles was being serviced, put two planes on the same height heading to the same place.
He realised his mistake with seconds to spare and told one plane to climb.
The problem was at that very instant the TCAS system told the other plane to climb. So both climbed, and collided.
Had TCAS done nothing they would have survived. Had the controller done nothing they would have survived. But TCAS telling them one thing and the controller telling them something else....

And true, planes can swerve more easily. But planes don't have a clear predictable course that can be spotted days, even weeks, ahead of time. Those pilots had seconds to take action. Starlink and OneWeb sorted this out over email. TFA said the alarm was raised on the 30th for a potential collision "last weekend" which would have been at least four days warning.
 
2021-04-11 4:35:40 PM  
Space Force is doing this work instead of NASA?

Is it because Space Force is just a money hose directed at private contractors? Or is it because Americans really love Donald Trump that farking much?
 
2021-04-11 4:54:08 PM  

Carter Pewterschmidt: This photo is weirdly without scale.

[Fark user image image 456x692]

That whole thing could be six foot high, or sixty. You have to look really closely to see the little cart with wheels and realise that thing is quite big.

Here is the same stack from a different angle.
[Fark user image image 850x524]

And it makes sense for Starlink to turn off their auto avoidance system when they know that OneWeb is aware of a conflict and is taking avoiding action. You don't want OneWeb to move their satellite "left" and the automatic Starlink system to move in the same direction!


Well, that also disables the LOIC that fires if Starlink decides the object is a danger.
 
2021-04-11 5:24:22 PM  
OneWeb, SpaceX satellites dodged a potential collision in orbit
Space Force sent "red alerts" to OneWeb and SpaceX.


Wow, I hate just about every single word in this headline and subheading.
 
2021-04-11 5:24:40 PM  
The only solution is to get some Korean actors to mash up Firefly and the Fifth Element but with a really clumsy script.

(Space Sweepers was okay, but one more script pass could have made it gold)
 
2021-04-11 5:38:09 PM  

Marcus Aurelius: the void of any clear international framework for managing active objects in space makes it largely unclear who would be held responsible if a collision actually occurred

My God, the lawyers wouldn't know who to sue.  That could be catastrophic.


Why not both? Catastrophe avoided.
 
2021-04-11 5:42:43 PM  

Cafe Threads: [Fark user image 394x750]


cdn.castellocheese.comView Full Size


der Brie
 
2021-04-11 6:25:25 PM  

Carter Pewterschmidt: Tim_In_CT: Gravity 2013 Soon to be in real life.

[Fark user image 850x327]

By the time Elon launches his Mars mission....

[Fark user image 500x288] [View Full Size image _x_]

And space is getting "crowded", but crowded is relative. Right this second there is one Starlink satellite over Ireland, none over the UK, three over France, two over Germany etc.

[Fark user image 850x632]

So you have three objects the size of a small car in an area the size of France.

Compare that to flights, even with pandemic conditions meaning only a fraction of flights are running.

[Fark user image 780x575]

So this is an issue, but space is big.



The starlink satellites are moving at 17,600 mph.  I don't think they linger very long over any one spot.
 
2021-04-11 6:36:07 PM  
Go away! Orbitin'!
 
2021-04-11 7:28:09 PM  
What they need is some sort of crew in orbit cleaning up any rubbish and debris.

Fark user imageView Full Size



/Obscure?
//Good. It's a terrible movie.
 
2021-04-12 7:33:23 AM  

Carter Pewterschmidt: Ivo Shandor: Carter Pewterschmidt: So this is an issue, but space is big.

Space is big, but airplanes can steer much more easily than satellites can. They also have flight planning to keep them on non-intersecting paths, with TCAS as a backup in case that fails.

TCAS is like Starlink's auto avoidance system. And the reason they turned it off is to avoid the sort of incident that happened over Switzerland a few years ago. Middle of the night and the lone controller on duty, having to use an old basic radar because the new one with the bells and whistles was being serviced, put two planes on the same height heading to the same place.
He realised his mistake with seconds to spare and told one plane to climb.
The problem was at that very instant the TCAS system told the other plane to climb. So both climbed, and collided.
Had TCAS done nothing they would have survived. Had the controller done nothing they would have survived. But TCAS telling them one thing and the controller telling them something else....

And true, planes can swerve more easily. But planes don't have a clear predictable course that can be spotted days, even weeks, ahead of time. Those pilots had seconds to take action. Starlink and OneWeb sorted this out over email. TFA said the alarm was raised on the 30th for a potential collision "last weekend" which would have been at least four days warning.


So, aside from the fact that this is not how any of this works, are we going to just discard the fact that Starlink has in this early stage only close to 1400 satellites in orbit with another 10000 scheduled to launch until 2027 - with 30000 more in the application process, which comes out to five times the total number of satellites launched since Sputnik?
Or that we are currently tracking around 20000 artificial objects (including only some 3000-4000 operational satellites)?
Or that there are some 128 million pieces of debris too small to be tracked, which still can (and often do) damage?
Or that, having reached a certain density, collisions with that debris have the very real potential to cascade into what's called the Kessler Syndrome, making it increasingly different to operate in certain orbits?

But yeah, other than that and the fact that they're nothing alike, this is exactly the same as air traffic.
Hell, maybe Elon can just shoot a couple of traffic lights up there? Maybe a roundabout or two?
 
2021-04-12 8:56:33 AM  

Bennie Crabtree: Space Force is doing this work instead of NASA?

Is it because Space Force is just a money hose directed at private contractors? Or is it because Americans really love Donald Trump that farking much?


It's because they've always done it.  And they've always done it because they're the only ones with the global sensor network required to do it.  That's changing, but it won't ever be NASA - that's not their mission.  At this point it's being farmed out to the Department of Commerce.
 
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