When Amber Yang watched the film Gravity – which features a cataclysmic collision which destroys the International Space Station – it gave her an idea.
She knew that hundreds and thousands of miles above Earth, pieces of wreckage were whizzing around our planet – some of them big enough to cause billions of dollars worth of damage to precious satellites and spacecraft.
So Yang, bored by her schoolwork, decided to try and find a way of tracking it, and ensuring cosmic debris doesn’t become a danger to the next generation of humans venturing into space.
Video by Daniel Kavanaugh. Additional editing by Bernadette Young.
If you liked this story, sign up for the weekly bbc.com features newsletter, called “If You Only Read 6 Things This Week”. A handpicked selection of stories from BBC Future, Earth, Culture, Capital, and Travel, delivered to your inbox every Friday.