Question: Satellites can affect whit something Terra?


  1. mmm I am not sure about what do you exactly mean, andrei997. Could you please rephrase your question? thanks!


  2. Hi Andrei997,

    I do not think I understood it either. Sorry :S If you could rephrase it, it would help us greatly 🙂



  1. if they can affect magnetic field, or they can fall and act like a meteorit?


  2. Hi andrei997, now I got it 🙂
    satellites can indeed feel the magnetic field, and some of them use it also to keep their exact position and orientation, but they can not affect it. Their mass is too tiny in comparison with the Earth, and unless they want to interfere on purpose, like a space weapon, they are not able to do it. I actually do not know if they could in theory carry a magnet powerful enough to interfere with the Earth magnetic field, if we have the technology to do so, I am here doing some science fiction speculation…
    Regarding the possible fall, yes, they can fall on Earth, and they can be spotted as a meteorite, like a shooting star (and if the satellite is big enough, some pieces can even fall on the ground, exactly like for the meteorite). In fact, they are programmed to do so, when they run out of fuel, otherwise all the best spots in space will be filled with old, broken satellites. If you don’t send the command to come back to earth, and the satellite is not too close to earth, in principle it will stay in its position, and sooner or later a lot of junk will be flying around our planet. If the satellite is, on the other hand, closer to the Earth, it will feel the drag from the atmosphere, and slowly decelerate until it will fall down. Usually, however, satellites receive a command to come back when they are close to their end, so scientists can use the last available power to set exactly where they will fall (usually in the ocean, to minimize the risk of falling on top of a house!).


  3. Hi Andrei,

    Anna answered your question very well. I do not think I have much to add. If you would like to ask anything further, please do go ahead and ask! 🙂