A Space Junk Removal Mission Got Struck By Space Junk

An illustration of the ClearSpace-1 mission, which is set to launch in 2026.
An illustration of the ClearSpace-1 mission, which is set to launch in 2026.


An illustration of the ClearSpace-1 mission, which is set to launch in 2026.

In a sad case of debris-on-debris crime, a defunct payload adapter that was chosen as the subject of a space debris cleanup mission was itself hit by a piece of space junk.

The VESPA payload adapter has been floating in Earth’s orbit following the launch of a Vega rocket in 2013, adding to the thousands of pieces of space junk that currently surround our planet. On August 10, the European Space Agency (ESA) was informed by the United States 18th Space Defense Squadron that new pieces of debris were spotted within the vicinity of the VESPA adapter, suggesting that the object broke up into smaller pieces due to a collision with another piece of space debris.

Read more

For more spaceflight in your life, follow us on Twitter and bookmark Gizmodo’s dedicated Spaceflight page.

More from Gizmodo

Sign up for Gizmodo's Newsletter. For the latest news, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Click here to read the full article.