Should we be concerned about space junk?

The first prototype internet satellites from Amazon are now in space. They lifted off from the Space Coast just after 2 p.m. Friday afternoon. 

The "Project Kuiper Program" is set to compete with SpaceX's Starlink network providing internet to unserved communities across the globe.

Amazon eventually hopes to have over 3,200 satellites in low earth orbit in the years to come.

"Obviously they are a competitor," said Dr. Don Platt an Associate Professor of Space Systems at Florida Tech. 

"I suppose who better than Amazon now to be a competitor to SpaceX?"

SpaceX's Starlink program already has 4800 satellites in orbit.

With two major companies now launching satellites in orbit, there is a growing concern about space junk.

Dr. Platt says that the major concern is that low earth orbit, which is an area that's up to about a thousand miles above the surface of the earth, is getting cluttered."

Any type of collision can be catastrophic," said Dr. Platt. "Debris that is generated by that type of collision can sort of have an exponential effect and cause more and more debris to be generated.

"Increasing the amount of satellites only increases the odds of potential collisions in low earth orbit according to Dr. Platt."

The ultimate concern would be that if we got to the point where debris was generated on such a continuous basis, it may be impossible to occupy low earth orbit. And I don't think anybody wants to get into that situation."