Astronomers stark warning - space junk and satellites RUINING the sky for ...

Space: Incredible animation shows space debris orbiting earth

Light pollution from major cities is the reason why observatories are usually situated away from major metropolitan areas. However, there is now so much satellite congestion in space that nowhere will soon be safe from light pollution, a study has found.

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Researchers from a plethora of institutes in the US and Europe found there are now more than 9,300 tons (8,440 metric tons) of space objects orbiting Earth.

This includes both functioning and defunct satellites, as well as pieces of old rockets.

The study published in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society: Letters found that the number of object orbiting Earth could increase the brightness of the night's sky by more than 10 percent above natural levels.

Miroslav Kocifaj of the Slovak Academy of Sciences and Comenius University in Slovakia, who led the study, said: "Our primary motivation was to estimate the potential contribution to night sky brightness from external sources, such as space objects in Earth's orbit.

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Astronomers stark warning - space junk and satellites RUINING the sky for everyoneAstronomers stark warning - space junk and satellites RUINING the sky for everyone (Image: GETTY)

light pollutionLight pollution (Image: GETTY)

“We expected the sky brightness increase would be marginal, if any, but our first theoretical estimates have proved extremely surprising and thus encouraged us to report our results promptly."

According to the team, satellites and space junk ruin views of the cosmos by scattering reflected sunlight.

This can produce bright streaks which are indistinguishable from bodies such as stars.

The team stated this effect is most profound when they look at the Universe using low-resolution detectors, such as the human eye.

Study co-author John Barentine, director of public policy for the

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