A 20-year-old satellite that assessed the ozone layer is estimated to crash back to Earth on September 23, 2011, however NASA reported it still does not identify exactly where it will crash.
The U.S. space agency pointed out that the danger to public safety from the Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite (UARS) is very little and stated that the majority, although not all, of the equipment will melt during re-entry into Earth’s atmosphere.
Re-entry is estimated earlier or after Sept. 23, according to NASA in a short update on its website. The agency further revealed that the re-entry of UARS is advancing as a result of a sharp increase in solar activity. It assured that safety is their high concern, noting that since the history of falling space objects back to Earth, there have been no verified reports of a harm resulting from re-entering space objects.
The decommissioned satellite could possibly land everywhere between 57 degrees north latitude and 57 degrees south latitude, a vast inhabited territory. Estimations will only get much more accurate as the landing draws near.
The UARS satellite was dispatched into orbit by the space shuttle Discovery in 1991.
The 35 by 15 foot, 3 by 10 meter, spacecraft has a certain weight of 13,000 lbs. (5,900 kgs.) and carries 10 scientific equipment for gauging wind, ozone chemistry and temperature. It was formally decommissioned in 2005.
NASA disclosed that even though the spacecraft will shatter into pieces at the time of re-entry, not all of it will melt off in the atmosphere.
It is difficult to figure out just where in that area the debris will land, however the debris is estimated to impact around 500 miles (800 kilometers) long, according to the space agency.
It also advised everyone who comes across what they think may be space debris not to touch it, but to contact authorities for guidance.
Space debris can produce an amazing light display when it burns through the Earth’s atmosphere, and occasionally claimed as UFO. Many claimed UFO sightings have been ruled out as space debris. Most of these UFO claims described a descending huge fireball with trailing tail just like a comet. During landing explosion mostly happens. However, there are many reports on falling objects with no evidence in the area that anything crashed at all. Cases like these brought up to the question, are all objects falling from space to Earth, space remains or extraterrestrial UFOs mistakenly identified or even intentionally ruled out as space particles to cover up UFO activities?
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Satellite on collision course with Earth