GMAT Practice Question Set #43 (Question 127-129)

Critical Reasoning Question #128: Large artificial satellites  
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Although the number of large artificial satellites orbiting the Earth is small compared to the number of small pieces of debris in orbit, the large satellites interfere more seriously with telescope observations because of the strong reflections they produce. Because many of those large satellites have ceased to function, the proposal has recently been made to eliminate interference from nonfunctioning satellites by exploding them in space. This proposal, however, is ill conceived, since _______.


many nonfunctioning satellites remain in orbit for years


for satellites that have ceased to function, repairing them while they are in orbit would be prohibitively expensive


there are no known previous instances of satellites’ having been exploded on purpose


the only way to make telescope observations without any interference from debris in orbit is to use telescopes launched into extremely high orbits around the Earth


a greatly increased number of small particles in Earth’s orbit would result in a blanket of reflections that would make certain valuable telescope observations impossible

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