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Space Chicken

from Fast Company

SpaceX is playing a game of chicken with its Starlink satellites

BY MICHAEL GROTHAUS

SpaceX is playing a game of chicken with its Starlink satellites
[Photo: Flickr user Official SpaceX Photos]

Elon Musk’s SpaceX apparently doesn’t play well with others when it comes to space traffic. As Forbes reports, on Monday the European Space Agency (ESA) said it had to perform collision avoidance maneuvers with its Aeolus Earth observation satellite when it detected that it had a 1 in 1,000 chance of hitting “Starlink 44,” one of SpaceX’s Starlink satellites.

While those odds of a collision might seem slim, they were actually 10 times higher than the threshold that requires a collision avoidance maneuver. The thing is, when the ESA realized its satellite was on a potential collision course with Starlink 44, the agency contacted SpaceX and asked it to move its satellite out of the way. But SpaceX refused to, turning the incident into a game of chicken in space.

[ click to continue reading at Fast Company ]

Posted on September 5, 2019 by Editor

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