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Only particles of about 10cm or above can be tracked using radar. But both explosions would have generated millions of smaller fragments which are difficult to detect. The space station has shields to protect it against objects under 1cm in size. Anything larger than 1cm would be perfectly capable of penetrating these shields.


 space debris junk
UK researchers have developed a device to drag space junk out of orbit. They plan to launch a demonstration of their "CubeSail" next year. It is a small satellite cube that deploys a thin, 25-sq-m plastic sheet.


 sail space junk cleaning satellite orbit drag debris space junk
Forensic analysis of the debris left after a nuclear explosion could yield crucial evidence about the composition and the origin of the bomb, say scientists.


 debris nuclear proliferation bomb
A piece of debris has narrowly missed the International Space Station (ISS), forcing its six crew members to go to their escape capsules and prepare for an emergency evacuation back to Earth.


 space junk ISS debris orbit collision
A five tonne, 20-year-old satellite has fallen out of orbit and is expected to crash somewhere on Earth on or around 24 September, according to Nasa.


 NASA orbit satellite crash space danger asteroid debris space junk
A Japanese fishing vessel swept away by the March 2011 tsunami has been spotted adrift off the west coast of Canada.


 Japan Canada ship shipwreck tsunami debris Pacific Ocean ocean system:unfiled