Outer-space is too crowded. As of Jan. 21 of this year, 3,372 satellites were orbiting the planet, and SpaceX is rapidly lifting this number with every Starlink launch.

However, a new satellite from a Dutch internet-of-things (IoT) company called Hiber recently sent a novel CubeSat satellite into space designed to de-orbit itself once its lifespan is exhausted, according to a press release emailed to Interesting Engineering under embargo.

The Hiber Four satellite was lifted on SpaceX's Transporter-1 rideshare — the first of 2021. But with satellites launching into low-Earth orbit with increasing frequency, will de-orbiting satellites help to reduce the crowd?

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De-orbiting satellites could reduce the crowd in space

Hiber Four is a second-gen satellite designed and built by Hiber's in-house engineers — stationed in the company's Amsterdam office. Both Hiber Four and its sister satellite Hiber Three — which is launching in March — are half the previous satellite generation's volume.