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Plummeting US Satellite to Hit Earth Friday

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kendrik578

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NASA launched the Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite (UARS) 20 years ago this month. And now that bus-sized satellite is plunging toward Earth.

Mark Matney, an orbital debris scientist at NASA's Johnson Space Center in Texas, says UARS will likely reenter the atmosphere on September 23, 2011. He says scientists will be able to narrow the time frame as it gets closer.

As far as where it will crash, Matney says UARS passes over the Earth between 57 degrees north latitude and 57 degrees south latitude.


Plummeting US Satellite to Hit Earth Friday | Science and Technology | English
 

ecps92

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Latest NASA Update:
"As of Sept. 20, 2011, the orbit of UARS was 127 mi by 140 mi (205 km by 225 km). Re-entry is expected Sept. 23, plus or minus a day. It is still too early to predict the time and location of re-entry. Predictions will become more refined over the next two days."



Falling NASA Satellite: Complete Coverage of UARS Spacecraft's Fiery Demise
Falling NASA Satellite: Complete Coverage of UARS Spacecraft's Fiery Demise | Falling NASA Satellite, Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite | Space Junk & Orbital Debris | Space.com


Well only showing one ship on the AIS map. Hope it doesn't get hit by this old satellite ;)
It might have a good view of the crash maybe!
Live Ships Map - AIS - Vessel Traffic and Positions
 

janecooper

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Basically, the Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite was revolving around the Earth for the last 20 years. In 2005, NASA effectively decommissioned the satellite. To add, the instrumentation on the satellite was still working, but only barely. It was said that the atmosphere of Earth will melt away most of UARS when it passes down and a few big parts are expected to strike land. However, let us not panic because UARS satellite pieces have 1 in 3,200 chance of hitting Earth. Moreover, NASA is providing hourly updates on the status of the UARS satellite. Even with that, the best estimate is that NASA will be able to provide two hours’ warning on the UARS re-entry. Solar activity is blamed for the speed of UARS’s fall. The increased solar activity is also blamed for troubles with communications satellites. Though UARS is falling from the sky quickly, it is just one of the estimated 22,000 pieces of “space junk” orbiting the Earth.
 

rwier

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....................................................................... However, let us not panic because UARS satellite pieces have 1 in 3,200 chance of hitting Earth. ..................................................................................................
From your link above:
_________________________________________________________________________________
"NASA estimates that there is a 1 in 3,200 chance of the pieces of UARS hitting land. The only continent that is not within the fall zone is Antarctica. The chance that each individual piece will hit a person is about 1 in 20 trillion."
_________________________________________________________________________________
and from:

SpaceWeather.com -- News and information about meteor showers, solar flares, auroras, and near-Earth asteroids
__________________________________________________________________________________
"Not all of the spacecraft will burn up in the atmosphere, however; according to a NASA risk assessment, as many as 26 potentially hazardous pieces of debris could be scattered along a ground track some 500 miles long. The same report puts the odds of a human casualty at 1 in 3200."
_________________________________________________________________________________

Editorial incompetence? NASA related confusion? When I was in the 2nd Grade, there were probably 3 or 4 kids in the class of 25 that would be laughing all recess after reading this. Collectively, this Nation (USA) has lost it's aim.

Never-the-less, I will be checking out sighting predictions for my little acre, lol.

Rob
 

OCO

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Moreover, NASA is providing hourly updates on the status of the UARS satellite. Even with that, the best estimate is that NASA will be able to provide two hours’ warning on the UARS re-entry.
Is there a NOAA SAME code for "falling space debris in your location"??:wink:
 

rwier

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Let me start off by saying that I'm not very good with lat/long, but isn't that basically most of the inhabited earth? Besides Antarctica?
For the serious observer

Despite all the "uncertainly" as to the re-entry location, certain facts about this location are not in doubt.

1) The "footprint" of the debris field is, in general, shaped like a rounded end football (probably close to an ellipse, for you techies).

2) This "football" is circling the Earth (ahead of the orbiting sat) about once every 90 minutes.

3) The location of this "football" at ANY GIVEN MOMENT is NOT UNCERTAIN but is, in fact, HIGHLY PREDICABLE.

4) To attempt to visually see the satellite during it's remaining orbits, go to :

Spaceweather.com's Simple Satellite Tracker: International Space Station, spy satellites, Hubble Space Telescope

and enter your zip. Look in the results for UARS. This will give you sighting predictions. Remember that these sighting predictions do not equate with you being in the debris field.

You may see the satellite burn-up on re-entry and be hundreds of miles from the debris field. It is also possible for you to be in the debris field, and not have a sighting opportunity to see the burn-up that will occur just prior (long explanation available on request, lol).

Rob
 
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