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Orbiting Space Junk Must Be Swept Up in Five Years Under US Plan

Low Earth Orbit is the region of space within 2,000 km of the Earth's surface. It is the most concentrated area for orbital debris.

Low Earth Orbit is the region of space within 2,000 km of the Earth's surface. It is the most concentrated area for orbital debris.

Source: NASA
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US regulators concerned with a proliferation of orbiting space junk amid a new generation of thousands of satellites are poised to require a quicker cleanup of defunct spacecraft.

Operators will need to bring satellites down from orbit within five years of the crafts’ ending service, compared with the current requirement of 25 years, under a proposal issued Thursday by Federal Communications Commission Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel. The matter faces a Sept. 29 vote at the agency and is expected to pass.