Space debris

Publico (Madrid)
Graphic Chiqui Esteban, Álvaro Valiño
Published September 13th 2008
Software Illustrator, Google Eath plugins

The information
Before the take-off of the Atlantis shuttle, the NASA recognized they were worried about the possibility of being hit by space debris. Publico published a double spread on the Science section on that sunday explaining the dimension of this problem.

The design
The main piece (Chiqui Esteban) shows the space debris around the Earth, the actual number and position at 22.00h the day before the publication of the article. The colors show what is debris and what's not: the black dots are active satellites. The magenta ones, inactive satellites. The blue dots are the actual space debris. We completed the information with the different distances (satellites, ISS, Hubble, shuttles, debris... right area), the actual hits by space debris in the last mission of a shuttle (information from a graphic by The New York Times, left area) and an explanation by Álvaro Valiño on how the space debris is generated and how it is spread around the orbit.