Environment definition, small particles, diameter less than or equal to 1 MMThe collection of particles of diameters one millimeter and less far outnumbers the larger particle distribution in orbit. These small particles cannot be tracked from ground based radar as can the larger debris, therefore, there is greater uncertainty in their properties. The population is growing from contributions due to collisions of larger debris, explosions, and aluminum oxide particles from solid rocket motors. The solid rocket motor contribution is the prominent growth parameter, and the input from Space Shuttle deployed upper stages will range between 50,000 and 100,000 pounds per year. The environment is important because of the different design problems that will be posed to the engineer and scientist. The emphasis shifts from catastrophe deign, probability versus exposure time, and tracking-avoidance, to a continuous degradation problem.