Controllers Steer Station Clear of Space Debris

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Brilliant City Lights

ISS043E218074 (05/18/2015) — This night view from the International Space Station on May 18, 2015 gives a view of brilliant city lights on the Earth’s surface shining beneath thousands of stars above. The thin line of Earth’s atmosphere can be seen with the green glow of aurora along the outer edge.

Playing it conservatively, International Space Station flight controllers conducted a pre-determined avoidance maneuver (PDAM) today to steer the station well clear of a fragment of a spent Minotaur rocket body launched in 2013. Having tracked the object throughout the weekend and today, U.S. and Russian flight controllers executed a 5 minute, 22 second firing of the ISS Progress 58 thrusters at 2:58 p.m. CDT to slightly raise the station’s orbit and distance it from the fragment that was projected to pass within three statute miles of the complex later in the day.

The maneuver raised the station’s altitude by just 106 feet at apogee and 7/10 of a mile at perigee, resulting in an ISS orbit of 254 x 244.8 statute miles.

The crew was never in any danger and the maneuver will have no impact on the scheduled landing later this week of Expedition 43 Commander Terry Virts of NASA, Soyuz commander Anton Shkaplerov of the Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos) and Flight Engineer Samantha Cristoforetti of the European Space Agency, who are completing preparations for their return to Earth and a parachute-assisted landing in Kazakhstan in their Soyuz TMA-15M spacecraft at 9:43 a.m. EDT Thursday.

3 thoughts on “Controllers Steer Station Clear of Space Debris

  1. pedro luis

    hola saludos para la gente de la ESTACION ESPACIAL-los miro desde mi casa en MERIDA VENEZUELA.creo que la estrella que brilla mas se destaca en esa zona del cielo creo que son ustedes FELICITACIONES Y MUCHA SUERTE-.

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  2. Leopoldo Fco.J.Alamo Cabrero

    Para mi persona la Estacion Espacial tiene un subtitulo. EL MAGNIFICAT del SIGLO XXI “Se legra mi Alma al observar en el firmamento su figura” .Suerte y buen regreso muchachos.

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