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'Successful' Destruction of Rogue Spy Satellite

February 21, 2008: Satellite Explodes over Pacific Ocean
"More than 100 metric tons of man-made objects reenter in an uncontrolled fashion each year. Of satellites that reenter, approximately 10-40% of the mass of the object is likely to reach the surface of the Earth.[17] On average, about one catalogued object reenters per day. Approximately a quarter of all objects are of U.S. origin.

Due to the Earth's surface being primarily water, most objects that survive reentry land in one of the world's oceans. The estimated chances that a person will get hit and injured is around 1 in a trillion." Source: Wikipedia - Atomospheric Re-entry

"WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The Pentagon declared on Monday that its mission to blast apart a defunct spy satellite with a missile fired from a Navy warship had been a success.

The strike took place 247 km (153.5 miles) above the Pacific Ocean last Wednesday as the satellite sped through space at more than 17,000 mph (27,000 kph), according to U.S. officials.

Missile Launches Towards Rogue Spy Satellite

"By all accounts this was a successful mission," Marine Gen. James Cartwright, vice chairman of the U.S. military's Joint Chiefs of Staff, said in a statement.

Cartwright said analysis of debris supported the initial conclusion that the missile had most probably destroyed the satellite's tank of hazardous hydrazine fuel as intended.

"From the debris analysis, we have a high degree of confidence the satellite's fuel tank was destroyed and the hydrazine has been dissipated," he said.

Experts were tracking less than 3,000 pieces of debris, all smaller than a football. "The vast majority of debris has already reentered or will shortly reenter the Earth's atmosphere in the coming days and weeks," Cartwright said."

"The Kessler Syndrome is a scenario, proposed by NASA consultant Donald J. Kessler, in which the volume of space debris in Low Earth Orbit is so high that objects in orbit are frequently struck by debris, creating even more debris and a greater risk of further impacts. The implication of this scenario is that the escalating amount of debris in orbit could eventually render space exploration, and even the use of satellites, too prone to loss to be feasible for many generations.

The Kessler Syndrome is especially insidious because of the "domino effect and Feedback runaway." Any impact between two objects of sizable mass will create additional shrapnel debris from the force of collision. Each piece of shrapnel now has the potential to cause further damage, creating even more space debris. With a large enough collision (such as one between a space station and a defunct satellite), the amount of cascading debris could be enough to render Low Earth Orbit essentially impassable."

Movie of Satellite Destruction Source: YouTube:WiredNews


We All Need the Qualities of Hero ...

Image Courtesy:

... but if you weren't born with them and don't expect any close encounters with mutant spiders or toxic waste any time soon you can still save the planet (or at least reduce your personal carbon footprint) using Carbon Hero.

The little foot-shaped sensor "identifies and evaluates the different forms of transport, ... the custom Carbon Hero (CH) application processes the data stream by way of an algorithm and database ... then outputs this to the user [via a Java application running on their mobile device]."

Carbon Hero computes the carbon footprint using values from the UK's Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) to evaluate each trip's environmental impact.

According to the European Space Agency's (ESA) News Portal CH was a "regional prize winner in the 2007 European Satellite Navigation Competition, sponsored by ESA’s Technology Transfer Programme, the device uses [GPS] satellite navigation technology to track journeys."

The CH web site explains that "adoption of a new technology or system is more successful when it involves the minimum of interference or learning by the user. Using sophisticated sensors and programming, Carbon Hero does the learning and deduces modes of transport being used, with almost no user input required."

Carbon Hero's story is just beginning and Andreas Zachariah and Nick Burch are looking for a "visionary investor with integrity and appetite to unlock full potential via a mobile provider/manufacturer alliance."

Finding investment should be a lock if CH keeps winning battles the way it has been.

The ESA news says "in addition to winning a regional prize in the 2007 European Satellite Navigation Competition, Carbon Hero was awarded the British Standards Institute (BSI) prize for Sustainability Design in July last year. It was a finalist in the 2007 Oxygen Awards and Deutsche Bank Pyramid Awards, and also invited to enter the Saatchi & Saatchi World-Changing Ideas Awards. It is now in the closing rounds of the 2008 St. Andrews Environmental Prize."

The dynamic duo envision several future projects including a stand-alone CH unit, a tracker-style CH post-processing unit, auto-related products for driver safety and vehicle fuel efficiency/environmental impact, a mass-transit climate control device and a water-saving aid.

Carbon Hero Demo Application

Andreas Zachariah talks about CarbonHero on the BBC World Service: Culture Shock with Philip Dodd

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