Space travel debris clutters Earth’s orbit, putting innovation at risk

After 13 years, nearly 300 orbits and millions of scientific observations, NASA scientists directed the Cassini probe to burn up in Saturn's atmosphere last week.  They ended the mission because the spacecraft's fuel was nearly depleted, meaning that NASA would have lost the ability to control Cassini's trajectory and could not guarantee it would not crash into a sensitive site like the icy moon Enceladus, which could potentially harbor extraterrestrial life.  Saturn and Enceladus are currently more than 930 million miles from Earth, but humankind seems to have less dedication to cleanliness in space closer to home.

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