Information on Light Pollution, Radio Interference, and Space Debris
Here are some general sources of information on light pollution, radio interference, and space debris:
Most people today can only see a few stars due to the increasing brightness of the night sky from artificial sources. The brighter the night sky, the less one can detect faint objects. This affects almost every observatory in the world at some level.
- International Dark-Sky Association
- International Astronomical Union Commission B7: Protection of Existing and Potential Observatory Sites.
- Protecting the night sky in Chile (in Spanish)
Observations at a wide range of wavelenghts is crucial to understanding our universe. Radio telescopes are not immune to interference caused by humans.
Space (or orbital) debris is any inactive object in Earth orbit. Today there are over 20,000 objects larger than 10 centimeters tracked, and the number is increasing. There are two concerns for astronomers: first, the collision risk that a piece of debris will disable an active astronomy mission. Second, it is now almost impossible to take long exposures of the night sky without at least one satellite streak appearing in the image.
- Studies of orbital debris impacts on the Hubble Space Telescope
- NASA's Orbital Debris Program Office - the lead NASA office on orbital debris
- Inter-Agency Space Debris Coordination Committee - the international organization concerned with space debris