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Russian Mission Control Adjusts ISS Orbit to Avoid Space Junk Collision

© NASAInternational Space Station (ISS)
International Space Station (ISS) - Sputnik International
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To avoid a scenario from the movie Gravity, the Roscosmos Mission Control Centre has carefully moved the orbit of the International Space Station (ISS) to avoid a potentially fatal collision with debris from a former spacecraft.

The International Space Station is featured in this image photographed by an STS-133 crew member on space shuttle Discovery after the station and shuttle began their post-undocking relative separation. Undocking of the two spacecraft occurred at 7 a.m. (EST) on March 7, 2011. - Sputnik International
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MOSCOW (Sputnik) Russia’s space agency Roscosmos adjusted the orbit of the International Space Station (ISS) due to a threat of collision with fragments of a former spacecraft, a spokesperson for the Roscosmos Mission Control Centre said Thursday.

“The adjustment of the orbit was carried out by means of engines of cargo spacecraft Progress M-26M. The engines were switched on at 8:22 a.m. Moscow time [05:22 GMT] and were running 140.4 seconds…,” the spokesperson told RIA Novosti.

As a result of the maneuver the altitude of the ISS increased by 550 meters (1,804 feet).

The International Space Station brings together the space agencies of Russia, the United States, Canada, Japan, as well as the multinational European Space Agency. The first component of the ISS was launched in 1998.

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