Thursday, February 07, 2019

Space Debris - the Interactive Map

Satellites is a THREE.js visualization of the man-made debris which is currently floating in orbit around planet Earth. This 3D globe shows 10,000 orbiting objects that are tracked by the U.S. Space Surveillance Network.

There are currently more than 20,000 objects, mostly rocket bodies, debris, and satellites in orbit about our planet. This map simulates around 10,000 of those objects orbiting the Earth based on real data. Three different types of man-made object are shown on the map, these are designated as Payload, Debris or Rocket Body. These three different types of object are represented on the map by different shapes. If you select an object on the map you can also see what type of object it is and more details from its entry on the Space Track database.

You can learn more about how all this debris ended up orbiting the Earth on the Story of Space Debris. The Story of Space Debris visualizes the history of space debris accumulating around the Earth since the launch of Sputnik 1 in 1957. The rocket that launched Sputnik was the first ever piece of space debris. There are now over 20,000 man-made objects currently orbiting the Earth.

The visualization shows all these man-made objects orbiting an interactive 3D globe. The Story of Space Debris starts in 1957 with that Russian launch of Sputnik 1. If you use the forward buttons you can progress chronologically through the history of the space program and watch as the space debris quickly accumulates in orbit around planet Earth.

Orbital Objects is another WebGL Globe showing all the space debris orbiting our planet. It also shows the position of currently active satellites. Active satellites on this globe are displayed in green, inactive satellites in grey and the red points show the space debris.

No comments: