Many science teams, such as the ACE project pictured here, are
repositioning satellites so they won't be damaged in the meteor
Click on image for full size
Image courtesy of NASA
Meteor Shower May Cause Problem with Spacecraft
News story originally written on November 15, 1998
meteor shower is expected to
peak on November 17th, 1998. The meteors may cause problems with many
different satellites in orbit. The meteors could break the outside skin
of the satellites or cause problems with sensitive electronics.
Only a small fraction of the meteors are big enough to break through the
skin of a satellite. The chances of this type of problem are very small.
The biggest threat are ionized particles created by very small meteors
colliding with a satellite. Even though the meteors can't damage a
satellite's hull, they can create an electric field that can damage
sensitive electronics inside the satellite.
Some projects such as the Advanced
will power-down the instruments on their
satellites. Scientists believe that this will prevent the meteors from
doing any damage. The satellites may also be reoriented to shield
sensitive equipment or to present the smallest profile toward the meteors.
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