China dumps most debris into space: Report
China, a relative newcomer to the space age, has topped the list of countries contributing to space debris, reports a study by the Russian space agency Roscosmos.
China accounts for 40 percent of the space debris, followed by the United States of America, which produces 27.5 percent. Russia stands at the third position, with 25.5 percent of space debris, the study showed, reports Discovery News.
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Image: The Shenzhou-7 manned spaceship, the Long-March II-F rocket are transferred to the launch pad at the Jiuquan Launch Center in Gansu province of China
Photographs: China Daily/ Reuters
Blame is on the Chinese military
And the credit for catapulting China to the top of the orbital garbage heap goes to the Chinese military, which deliberately destroyed a defunct weather satellite in 2007 to test a missile. The explosion created more than 2,800 pieces of free-flying shrapnel.
Overall, there's more than 10,000 dead spacecraft, rocket bodies and other relics of the space age circling Earth, all of which present a formidable challenge for governments, researchers and companies wishing to operate satellites for remote sensing, science, communications and other services.
Image: The Shenzhou-7 manned spaceship is seen at the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center, Gansu province of China
Photographs: China Daily / Reuters
'10,000 dead spacecrafts, other relics circling Earth'
Image: A young boy looks at a model Chinese spaceship displayed at an exhibition center in Shanghai