Thursday, September 08, 2011

Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite Will Soon Visit Lower Atmosphere

NASA's 6.5-ton Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite will be re-entering Earth's atmosphere in what NASA has described as "an uncontrolled fall" (don't you just love these euphemisms?) — but precisely when and where the satellite will re-enter remains a mystery. (excuse me but is this not the very nature of an uncontrolled fall?)

It is a bit too early to say with any accuracy where or what exactly will come down. There is little doubt that some of the satellite will make landfall sometime between late September and early October.

From the article:
  • Much of the satellite which measures 35 feet long and 15 feet wide, is expected to burn up in Earth's atmosphere, but at least one computer analysis has predicted that as many as 26 components — weighing in at a total of over 1100 pounds — will actually break atmosphere and make landfall, falling within an estimated debris footprint length of 500 miles.

Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite article

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