China Says That A SpaceX Satellite Nearly Collided With Their Space Station, And They Are Not Happy

China has registered a complaint with the United Nations that the country had to take evasive steps to save the collision of China’s space station with Elon Musk’s SpaceX.

In July and October, SpaceX satellites became appallingly close to China’s space station, potentially putting the “life or health of astronauts” on board in danger, China said in a note filed with the UN’s space agency in December.

“For safety reasons, the China Space Station implemented preventive collision avoidance control,” China said. 

The small satellites that were about to collide are part of SpaceX’s Starlink Internet Services division.

China asked the UN to remind nations that have signed an international agreement called the Outer Space Treaty, which includes the US, that they “bear international responsibility for national activities in outer space … whether such activities are carried on by governmental agencies or by non-governmental entities,” the South China Morning Post reported

The country also claims that SpaceX could be attempting to “test China’s sensibility in space.” 

SpaceX did not immediately respond to a request for comment. 

A Chinese Weibo user called the SpaceX’s satellites “just a pile of space junk” and another described them as “American space warfare weapons.”

“The risks of Starlink are being gradually exposed, the whole human race will pay for their business activities,” a third user wrote. 

Tesla was also criticized by China this April after an unsatisfied customer staged a protest over the safety of the company’s electric car that was shared widely on social media. Tesla later apologized to the customer.

China: SpaceX Satellites Have Almost Collided With Our Space Station


In 2015, the Tesla CEO was direct about his fear of China beating his company in space endeavors.

Speaking about a hypothetical situation in which SpaceX’s Starlink satellites beamed uncensored internet into China, Musk said the Chinese government could shoot down his satellites. 

“If they get upset with us, they can blow our satellites up, which wouldn’t be good,” Musk said. “China can do that. So probably we shouldn’t broadcast there.”

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