Definition of space junk in US English:

space junk


  • Disused satellites and other man-made debris in orbit around the earth.

    ‘windows on the space shuttle are replaced regularly because of chipping caused by collisions with small pieces of space junk’
    • ‘No one has any idea yet how many pieces of space junk were generated by the collision or how big they might be.’
    • ‘With satellites in LEO typically travelling at roughly 17,000 km/h, any collision with space junk is likely to be catastrophic.’
    • ‘People from across the UK have reported seeing bright objects in the night sky, thought to be meteors or "space junk".’
    • ‘Our algorithm determines the most efficient path to use for gathering all 18,000 pieces of space junk.’
    • ‘We're keeping an eye on this space junk which is headed now for our planet.’
    • ‘They replaced a camera on the Hubble telescope while working in an orbit littered with space junk.’
    • ‘Chunks of space junk from a decommissioned satellite are about to crash land back on earth.’
    • ‘A Windermere man believes a bright light he saw burning across the Bowness sky on Monday night could have been an asteroid or space junk.’
    • ‘The bright light seen in the sky over Hawke's Bay on Wednesday night may have been space junk.’
    • ‘More than just an aesthetic problem, space junk can crash into satellites and endanger ships passing through on their way to deeper space.’
    • ‘A large piece of space junk falls to earth every 10-12 days.’
    • ‘I don't know if it was some kind of Leonids preview, or if I just happened to see some space junk returning to earth.’
    • ‘The pilot of the plane, which was flying from Santiago, Chile, to Auckland, New Zealand, reported seeing flaming space junk over the Pacific about five miles away.’
    • ‘The more uncontrolled space junk floating around, the more dangerous orbital navigation through it.’
    • ‘Astronauts Steven Swanson and Joseph Acaba said they did not worry about space junk when they're floating outside.’
    • ‘Initially, the two countries planned to work together on the problem of space junk.’
    • ‘Hubble and Atlantis are flying in a 350-mile high orbit littered with space junk.’
    • ‘NASA says a piece of space junk should not threaten the planned spacewalk in just about two hours.’
    • ‘There may be over a million pieces of space junk currently orbiting the Earth.’
    • ‘The International Space Station is planning to change its orbit after narrowly avoiding two pieces of space junk last month.’