Heads Up, Dead Satellite Falling To Earth Next Week!
It's a bird, it's a plane...holy crap, it's a freakin' school bus flying at me!! Keep an eye on the sky next week as NASA says that a now defunct satellite will come crashing to earth sometime in the last week of September and will land...somewhere. Really NASA?!? You put a man on the moon, invented velcro and tang, you have a $19 Billion budget and that is the best you can come up with? The 6 1/2 ton 35 foot long satellite which is the size of a school bus was decommissioned in 2005 and has slowly been making it's way back to earth in an uncontrolled re-entry. 'Uncontrolled re-entry' is just a fancy way of saying that it's going to tear through the atmosphere in a ball of flame and crash somewhere into the earth.
Maybe I'm making too big of a deal about this, but I think I should be worried a little bit, right?
NASA says that most of the satellite will break apart in the atmosphere, but some pieces will make it to earth. The good news? You only have a 1-in-3,200 chance of being struck by debris. That's it. You have 1-in-10,000 odds of being struck by lightning in your lifetime, and that happens all the time!
This satellite was launched in 1991 and designed to operate for three years with a nice little price tag of $750 million, call me a penny pincher, but shouldn't something that costs $750 million dollars last a little longer than 20 years. Seriously, there are '91 Honda Civics still on the road.
Luckily, you can keep an eye on where the satellite is here as it screams through space at over 16,000 mph, or in this video, you can see where debris may land, which is pretty much anywhere.
NASA asks that if you see any o f the satellite debris, do not touch it and call the police because NASA wants it back and it is still property of the government. You can have it back, right after you fix my house or car that it just tore through. Don't worry, while you are watching the satellite on that video, these guys are up there doing something about it.