"Danger Will Robinson!" - Micrometeorite Hits a Satellite and Knocks Out Internet Connectivity

Some of these items sound like articles out of The Onion, but fact can sometimes be stranger than fiction.

According to Australia NBN’s Chief Development Officer, Gavin Williams:

“It effectively makes [the] satellite’s body rotate while it remains in its orbit. So the satellite is no longer pointing at the appropriate spot on Earth [and] the payload – the transmission system on that satellite – is effectively switched off for that period.”

The satellite was able to recover itself, but testing to restart the service took seven hours. Nearly 600 customers went two weeks without an internet connection following the crash.

Two weeks is definitely a long time to be without connectivity. For businesses, this could be fatal…

While this event seems to be unprecedented, it feels like it could happen more often as more and more satellites get put into orbit.

He added that this was the first time such an event was happened, and that “this kind of outage deserves the classification of being unprecedented.”

The increasing number of satellites in space is a cause of grave concern because of the development of megaconstellations and the build-up of space debris.

Read the full story here.

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