Astronomers tracking mysterious ‘space junk’ headed toward Earth

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Astronomers are eagerly waiting for a mysterious piece of space junk to land right here on earth.

Nature News reports that the newly-discovered object, called WT1190F, will fall to Earth above the Indian Ocean on Nov. 13.

The object is three to six feet long. It’s also believed to be hollow, suggesting it could be a “lost piece of space history that’s come back to haunt us,” astrophysicist Jonathan McDowell tells Nature News.

That means the object could be a spent rocket stage or piece of paneling. Nature News reports the piece of debris could date back decades, possibly to the Apollo era and the early days of space exploration.

The debris will enter the Earth’s atmosphere, and whatever parts of the object that don’t burn up will land in the Indian Ocean.

Experts will use this opportunity to study how such objects interact with the Earth’s atmosphere. And they’ll use it to test their plans in place to track any bigger, more dangerous objects that may head toward Earth.

Read more here. 


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