Hundreds of thousands of pieces of man-made debris are floating around out there, the detritus of more than 50 years of spaceflight. There have been chunks of dead satellites and spent rocket boosters — even a glove that an astronaut dropped in 1965 and a spatula that escaped from a space shuttle in 2006.

Because it zips along faster than a speeding bullet, the trash poses an ever-growing threat to the satellites that help the military communicate and gather intelligence and serve the world’s obsession with Google Earth and on-demand movies. Until last year, the Pentagon used what was called a “Space Fence” to track the junk and warn of potential collisions that make owners scramble to move their satellites out of the way.

I have no idea why they call this future radar technology a Space Fence when it is just a Space Junk Detector. The radar will be designed to detect, catalog, and predict debris moving through our planet's space. It is not a fence. Nor does it solve the problem of all the junk that's up there. What we need is not a Space Fence, or Space Junk Detector, but a Space Janitor.

That said, here is that scene from Hollywood...