The US meteorological satellite NOAA 17, which was not involved in the work, exploded in space with 16 debris.

The squadron confirmed the destruction of NOAA 17 at 10.11 GMT on 10 March. Tracking 16 associated debris.

Message from the 18th US Air Force Outer Space Control Squadron

Scientists are now monitoring 16 debris associated with the explosion so that they do not disrupt other objects. Whether the debris poses a threat to operating satellites is not specified.

The squadron said there was no indication yet that the incident was caused by a collision with another object.

According to the US Air Force, prior to the explosion, the satellite was in orbit with a minimum altitude of 800 km and a maximum altitude of 817 km.

The NOAA 17 satellite was launched into space in June 2002 and decommissioned in 2013. It is noted that earlier such satellites have already been destroyed in space due to the explosion of onboard batteries.