NASA tracks at least 500,000 pieces of space debris the size of a marble or larger that hurtle around Earth at speeds of 17,500 mph. Even flecks of paint orbiting Earth can damage the windows of spacecrafts. What does that mean to me, you may ask. Take a look at the picture of the space junk orbiting our Earth. 1996 - French satellite is hit by rocket that exploded ten years before. 2009 - Defunct Russian satellite hits and destroys US commercial satellite. 2007 - Chinese test uses missile to destroy an old satellite. Problem? The test added 3,600 pieces of space junk to the debris already orbiting Earth. Russia and the US created an imaginary box in space, termed "pizza box," around the space station. When debris is likely to pass close to the station, a "debris avoidance maneuver" moves the station slightly to avoid a possible collision. The crew can also "hide" in the Soyuz spaceship that takes them to and from the space station to Earth if the danger of a collision is deemed possible or probable. The hatch is closed until the danger of collision passes. Take a look at the NASA picture again. If something is not done soon, we won't be going to Mars or anywhere else without getting zapped by flying space junk.