The International Space Station (ISS) is nearing the end of its useful life just shy of the 30th anniversary of its space adventure. According to reports, NASA is soon preparing the end of that laboratory that it shares with Russia, Japan and Canada, located 400 kilometers from the Earth’s surface.
According to the publication Daily Mailthe United States National Aeronautics and Space Administration plans destroy the ISS by 2031 in the most remote region of the Pacific Ocean, known as “Point Nemo”.
The very operators of the ISS will be in charge of the re-entry burn of the facilities, thus providing the necessary impetus to “guarantee a safe atmospheric entry”.
The initiative was anticipated by the space agency in a report titled International Space Station Transition Reportwhere they indicated that the orbital laboratory will remain active until 2030 with the objective that the United States maintain its presence in space until the consolidation of new bases developed by private companies, such as Elon Musk’s Space X.
The International Space Station will explode in the year 2031. (Shutterstock)
Likewise, they went further in the document by promoting a “smooth transition” between the current ISS and the future private or semi-private stations that would start operating at the beginning of the next decade.
The International Space Station is active since November 1998; meanwhile, he accumulates more than 23 years of operations of different magnitude. Various agencies revealed that the facilities already have certain flaws and that a renewed infrastructure will soon be necessary.
For example, both Russia and China announced that they will build their own space laboratories. When they reported their plans from Moscow, they commented that the international laboratory has modules that “almost reached the end of their life.”
Point Nemo, final destination of the International Space Station
NASA is one of the main drivers of the destruction of the International Space Station.
The site chosen for the re-entry of the ISS to Earth is also known as the pacific pole of inaccessibility. It is the place in the ocean farthest from any mainland, in the southern region of the map.
Point Nemo is located more than 1,600 kilometers equidistant from the coasts of three distant islands. To the north is Ducie Island (one of the Pitcairn Islands), to the northeast is Motu Nui (islet of Easter Island and the westernmost place in Chile) and to the south is Maher Island (Antarctica). Its bottom is around 3,700 meters deep.
This oceanic pole of inaccessibility was officially designated in 1992 by the Croatian-Canadian engineer Hrvoje Lukatelawho calculated its coordinates using a specialized computer program that incorporated the ellipsoid shape of the Earth for maximum accuracy.
Its entire region is well known to space agencies, which officially call it the “South Pacific Uninhabited Zone.”
In particular, the space agencies of Russia, Europe and Japan often refer to this inaccessible ocean dump as “space graveyard”. It is estimated that there are more than a hundred dismantled space objects occupying this dump, which contains, among others, fragments of satellites and the Mir space station.
With information from agencies.