The Russian Federation tested a probable 'Nudol' direct ascent anti-satellite missile yesterday from Plesetsk, Russia with the target a defunct Russian satellite called Cosmos 1408. The US Space Command has reported there is a large debris cloud of up to 1000 pieces forming around Cosmos 1408’s area of orbit.
“LeoLabs is monitoring the situation in real-time and is starting to detect and track the debris field with each pass the debris makes over its radars," LeoLabs Australia Managing Director and former Air Commodore Terry van Haren said. "On the last pass over our Costa Rica Space Radar, well north of 100 new objects were detected with altitudes ranging from 440-520km.
"The objects will pass over our radars 3-4 times per day and with each pass, the number of objects being tracked will likely grow.
"Over the next few weeks we will be able to establish high fidelity tracking on this debris, which will help provide vital space surveillance for secure and safe operations in space.
“If a deliberate act, this would be a very irresponsible action by the Russian Federation.
"At an altitude of 480km, Cosmos 1408 was located in the middle of the high traffic zone of Low Earth Orbit and its debris field will pose a significant risk to all operators for decades to come, including the International Space Station, which sits at 420km and Starlink at 540km."