Around 50 pieces of India's Mission Shakti debris still floating in space
India clarified and said that the debris created by the destruction of the satellite will eventually settle down, in a matter of months.
Anti-satellite weapons help in destroying satellites in space. It can be used during times of war to destroy the satellites of enemy countries and disrupt various activities like communications.
India successfully tested the technology in March this year. It became the fourth country after the United States, Russia, and China to accomplish this feat.
The other side of this technology is the debris created in space. US Space Agency NASA criticised India's move by calling it a 'terrible, terrible thing’. Space is getting crowded with a large number of satellites present, and also because of the debris created by the remains of others that are not functional.
Debris is dangerous and also poses a threat to the International Space Centre. Earlier, part of the debris collided with the ISS creating a crack in one of its windows. Debris present in space travels with a speed of up to 17,500 mph and are a threat to satellites or spacecrafts travelling to space.
After the successful mission, India clarified and said that the debris created by the destruction of the satellite will eventually settle down, in a matter of months. A part of it has already settled and burnt in the atmosphere.
However, a new report on The Verge mentions that more than 50 pieces of debris still remain in space after India destroyed its satellite in March. This debris poses a 'small' but potential threat to the spacecraft that might pass close to it.
According to Jonathan McDowell, an astrophysicist who has been tracking the debris, it might take one more year for the remaining debris to settle. He says that this exceeds the estimated time quoted by Indian scientists. He also speculates that the debris will not take two years to settle.
Earlier in 2008, when the United States destroyed one of its satellites under Operation Burnt Frost, part of the debris went up in the higher orbit. India had destroyed one of the lower earth orbit satellites so that the debris would fall back to the earth because of the earth's gravity.