Musk, who is getting closer and closer to the US Army, wants to go to space to “sweep garbage”. Why should we be vigilant?

On November 7, the magazine reported that the magazine recently interviewed Gwen schotteville, chief operating officer of space exploration technologies, and ilon Musk’s most important official. Talking about the stainless steel rocket “starship” that the company is developing, schottville suddenly said that it can be used to help people solve the problem of space garbage. “Rocket debris and dead satellites threaten the space environment,” she said. < / P > < p > “it’s quite possible that we can transform the starship, get close to these rocket debris – someone else’s rocket, of course, and pick it up from the universe. It’s not easy, of course, but I believe star ships can be used to do this Space waste is a phenomenon that people often worry about. But so far, there has not been much space junk that has destroyed satellites. The only case that can be cited as a case is that in 2009, a Russian satellite destroyed an iridium satellite in the United States. According to the authoritative statistics of NASA, by 2020, there will be 20000 objects in the whole low orbit, of which more than 5000 are working satellites and other spacecraft. There are more than 2000 dead satellites and rocket debris, and there are less than 11000 so-called “space debris” caused by the falling off of satellite and rocket parts. Some space debris research institutions claim that there are 760000 space debris in earth orbit, which is somewhat alarmist. < / P > < p > in fact, in today’s aerospace field, it is not others who are most likely to cause space waste. It is the space exploration technology company that intends to launch 42000 satellites. So no matter musk or schottville, everyone says that their constellation is deployed in low orbit. If it fails, it will fall into the atmosphere and burn down due to air resistance within five years. It will not become space garbage. But it is reported that 3% of the satellite chain satellites, or 23 satellites, have been scrapped. With the continuous launch of follow-up satellites, the number of scrapped satellites will be more and more. Satellite chain satellites are deployed in the orbit of 320-640 km, most of them are 550 km, which means that most satellites suffer less air resistance. Even if we don’t do orbit keeping, we will continue to fly in orbit, and the duration may be much longer than five years. The orbit of the Hubble Space Telescope, which is just a little higher than 600 kilometers, has been flying for 30 years. Although the equipment is old, but there is no sign of overall falling. < / P > < p > therefore, it is likely that some kind of space cleaning technology has been discussed within the space exploration technology company, so as to prevent the dead satellite of “star chain” from colliding with other people’s satellites, resulting in huge claims. What can be done specifically? Several specific cleaning methods have been put forward in the world. The European Space Agency (ESA) proposes to use a cleaning spacecraft to take the net bag into orbit, find the dead satellite, and then take it in and look for the next one. When the net bag is full, the cleaning spacecraft turns down, rushes into the atmosphere and burns down. Japan proposes to use an electric cable to hold the dead satellite, reduce its speed, and force it to lower its orbit until it returns to the atmosphere. It has also been suggested that a device be used to eject dense airflow from the atmosphere into the front of the dead satellite, increasing the air resistance it suffers, and then falling It was also suggested that a huge bubble ball should be formed in the space by sweeping the spacecraft, sweeping across the track at high speed, and sticking all debris debris along the path into the foam ball until it was filled, and then returned to the atmosphere to burn up. < / P > < p > all of the above plans need to clean the spacecraft, have a relatively large volume to accommodate the cleaning equipment, and install powerful engines and enough fuel to have the ability to maneuver orbit change, so as to dispose of the space debris one by one. So a bulky starship looks like a good choice. < / P > < p > then the problem comes. The city management department is responsible for the street cleaning work on the earth. There are clear regulations on what is garbage and what can’t be destroyed by public and private property. If the environmental sanitation department cleans up the normal outdoor property as garbage, it should bear legal responsibility. Who has the final say in space? It can’t be a space exploration technology company, let alone the U.S. government. < / P > < p > in the case of a formal legal form, the UN space Commission is responsible for the registration of space objects worldwide. Each satellite launched into orbit will be given an official number. But the United Nations has yet to make any decision on who can carry out the business of cleaning up space debris. In the world space field, the discussion on space traffic control is still at the academic level, and has not risen to the height of the government. If some enterprises adhere to the principle of “no prohibition can be done by law” and go to the space to carry out road sweeping business without authorization, there is neither law nor mechanism to restrain them. If they take the working satellites of other countries as garbage, there is no punishment mechanism. Such a loss, even the insurance company is not compensated for “malicious acts of others”. < / P > < p > in view of the fact that SpaceX has recently been very close to the U.S. military, and even carried out research to transport supplies to the U.S. military by satellite ships, people have to suspect that schotteville suddenly proposed the motive of sweeping the streets in the universe. Satellites are very expensive and sensitive equipment. The U.S. military has long proposed that an attack on US satellites will be regarded as an attack on the United States itself. So, if an American enterprise sweeps away other people’s satellites as garbage, and uses a “wrong map” to prevaricate, how should the owner claim compensation? For China, which has already reached the second largest number of satellites in the world, this is an unavoidable problem. Therefore, it is necessary for the international community to work together to formulate international laws and make rigid provisions on space waste cleaning. If anyone “sweeps the road” without the owner’s consent, he must be severely punished, or at least confiscate his tools. Yueshang group has become the third social e-commerce service platform listed in China after being gathered in pinduoduo