Here’s an insane tidbit in Popular Science. There are approximately 500,000 “smaller orbital junk” as well as 21,000 “larger pieces” racing around Earth at this moment.
Numbers such as those make it seem that there are many bags full of trash orbiting the planet, and that’s not really far wrong.
Everything from old satellites to rockets are currently orbiting the planet…you can also view it in real-time.
“Stuff in Space” is a 3D map of trash in orbit around the earth.
James Yoder, an engineering student at the University of Texas, invented Stuff in Space and admits to Popular Science.
I never truly realized how much stuff is up there, until I viewed the plotted satellites.
The website is regularly updated daily with fresh data from Space-Track.org.
Zoom in to see various objects in orbit. At 160,000 kilometres up, the display shows the astronomy Astron UV satellites circa 1983. About 71,000 kilometres in orbit, you’ll see a chunk of rocket booster.
What else is out there in orbit! To find out, go to Stuff in Space.