A day after it launched a missile and blasted a large satellite into hundreds of thousands of pieces of debris, the Russian Defense Ministry has acknowledged the test but said it posed no danger to humans living in space.
“On November 15, the Defense Ministry of Russia successfully conducted a test, in which the Russian defunct Tselina-D satellite in orbit since 1982 was struck,” the statement issued on Tuesday said. “The United States knows for certain that the emerging fragments at the time of the test and in terms of the orbit’s parameters did not and will not pose any threat to orbital stations, satellites and space activity.”
The statement was issued about 24 hours after NASA, European, and Russian astronauts on board the International Space Station, out of concern for a potential collision with “new debris,” scrambled into their Crew Dragon and Soyuz spacecraft. They sheltered there for about two hours in case an emergency escape was necessitated by a debris strike.