05 May 2010
What happens when good satellites go bad? They drift through space, joining the massive amounts of debris floating out there like a zombie, potentially threatening other functioning satellites. This could certainly be the case with the Galaxy 15 commercial satellite that recently lost contact with the ground, and is now being dubbed by engineers as being “zombiesat.” Experts believe that this defunct satellite will probably drift to one of two “gravity wells” that catch most out-of-control spacecraft. The more challenging issue is that Galaxy 15 could threaten nearby satellites because its communications package is still working, and it could interfere with working satellites, and even siphon off their signals. The word is that this is the first time a satellite event like this has occurred, and we don’t really know what ramifications that Galaxy 15 will have on the myriad of commercial and military satellites floating around in space. We assume only time will tell. Read more about “zombiesat” here.