Monday, 8 October 2018

the kessler syndrome

The night skies of the Dutch town of Almere, as Dezeen reports, are host to a project from designer Daan Roosegaarde, known for his massive installations that combine technology and art in urban environments, that track and visualise in real time the nearly thirty-thousand registered pieces of orbiting space debris that envelops the Earth with neon green laser lights, evoking the juxtaposing nostalgia for monochrome monitors and radar traces with the other-worldly and alien.
Perhaps it strikes some that fretting over space junk is an indulgent luxury but as the artist reflects, these sizable objects are a threat to keeping the channels of communication open as well as advances in exploration itself—the title referring to the nightmare situation of collisional cascading where the low Earth orbit becomes so over-crowded with waste that safe space travel becomes untenable for generations and we lose our motivation to explore. The abstract threat, a feeling shared among stargazers surely, becomes immediate and encourages the audience to think about solutions and ways to upcycle the detritus of past missions. Learn more at the links up top.