Did you know that up to date, some 8,950 satellites have been launched into orbit? Based on the most recent estimates, about 5,000 of these satellites remain in orbit despite the fact that they have reached the end of their lifespan and no longer serve a purpose.
It is estimated that only around 1,950 of these satellites remain operational, while the rest have become space debris. These now-defunct satellites are joined by thousands of bits of debris, which are collectively referred to as "space junk".
And this junk is a huge problem as there is currently no way to safely get this garbage out of space. Until now.
On Wednesday, the Shanghai Academy of Spaceflight Technology announced that Chinese scientists successfully unfurled a drag sail to deorbit a recently launched Long March 2 rocket. The event marked the first time such an experiment was done with a rocket.
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