The Garbage that Smashed to Earth from SpaceS

Here lies the wreckage of the Genesis spacecraft in the Utah desert. It's just one of many space vehicles that have returned planetside in speeding balls of screaming fire.

The Garbage that Smashed to Earth from SpaceS

Here you can see an even more haunting photo, of a family in Texas who discovered a smoking chunk of the space shuttle Columbia in their front yard.

The Garbage that Smashed to Earth from SpaceS

Here's a farmer in Queensland, Australia, who found this unidentified hunk of metal on his property last year. Though nobody is quiet sure where the junk came from, it's possible that it's from a rocket used to launch a communications satellite.

The Garbage that Smashed to Earth from SpaceS

No one is really sure where this rock of metal alloy came from either, though it most certainly is not from nature. It crashed into a New Jersey home in 2007.

As space junk crashing to Earth becomes more and more common, I can't help but wonder who will be liable for damages it causes. If a chunk of a satellite or rocket crushes your car or injures you, who is responsible? The creator of the space vehicle? The launch facility? Somebody has to pay those damages.

See more amazing images of space junk that's fallen to Earth, or remains precariously wobbling through orbit, in the UK Guardian.

All photos via Reuters except mystery blob of New Jersey via Mike Derer/AP