Space Debris Risk
Extremes and Environmental Risk
Published Online: 15 SEP 2006
Copyright © 2002 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd
Encyclopedia of Environmetrics
How to Cite
Brillinger, D. R. 2006. Space Debris Risk. Encyclopedia of Environmetrics. 4.
- Published Online: 15 SEP 2006
Space debris has been defined as manmade objects or parts thereof in space that do not serve any useful purpose. There is now a very substantial amount of such ‘space junk’ circling the earth and posing a risk to active and inactive satellites, space stations and spacecraft. This debris presents a problem, with substantial environmental and legal implications. It is yet another pollution problem. This debris has resulted from the more than 3000 space flights that have taken place since 1957. The general concern is risk assessment, that is: estimating the probability of some future event of adverse consequence. In the present circumstance space debris risk assessment might be defined as: The estimation of the probability that certain performance variates of a space object of interest exceed relevant critical levels, within a specified time period, as a result of collisions with space debris.