International Space Station
How does the International Space Station protect itself from space debris?
This image was tweeted by Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield last week. The International Space Station uses Whipple shields to protect itself from space debris. In this image, a different shield is tested against a piece of debris. Had the International Space Station used this kind of monolithic shield, the spallation from the impact would have damaged the ISS. Spallation is what caused the gap at the bottom of the shield shown above. It is basically what happens when there is no other way for energy to move. So it shatters the side opposite to the impact location. Have you seen the movie Gravity starring George Clooney and Sandra Bullock? If you have, then you know the devastation that can be caused by space debris. To read more about how the International Space Station protects itself from debris, please check out this post: http://www.technobyte.org/interesting-facts/how-does-the-international-space-station-protect-itself-from-space-debris/