You read the title, and it sounds more like an indie rock band than a news story. The fact of the matter is that it’s real. You know we’ve always thought of astronauts as very smart people, personally I often think you probably have to be genius just to work at NASA. Even if you’re the coffee guy, you could probably be fully qualified to teach college, but NASA you start at the coffee machine. So, with all this brainpower, you think they’d come up with a better plan for the UARS. What the heck is that, you ask? It’s the Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite, and it weighs about seven tons. And, oh yeah, it’s supposed to crash back into earth. It’s supposed to hit sometime between Thursday and Saturday. Hope you cleared your calendars. The satellite is going to shed much of it’s weight as it breaks into planet, at 17, 000 miles per hour. It’s expected to weigh about 500+ pounds upon reentry, while potentially splitting up into 26 pieces, spraying over a 500 mile radius. There’s no way of determining exactly where its going to crash. NASA says people shouldn’t be concerned. Right.
You know what happens when you throw a penny from the top of the CN Tower right? It can crack concrete. That’s a penny, from the CN Tower. This is debris from a seven ton machine falling. From space. That’s pretty friggin’ far. Remember, even baby Superman’s capsule busted up when it crashed, and that was from Krypton!
So, you’re probably wondering ok NASA isn’t just going to let this thing fly to earth no questions asked or answered right? I mean, they probably got some crazy odds that this thing even touches land. You’d think right? Someone asked the question, what are the odds this thing or part of it hits a person? Not very high NASA says. So, you’re thinking one in a million? Um…it’s about 1 in 3200 that this thing hits a person. Those aren’t terrible odds. You many more lottery tickets would sell if that were the odds on the jackpot? Now, two hours prior to reentry the super smart science dudes and gals can estimate 25 minutes give or take, that works out to about 7,500 miles. How far is that? Well it’s about 2500 miles from Seattle to New York. So, pretty damn far. Can we ask the guy at the coffee machine if he has any ideas? Something big is falling from space, we don’t really know when or where, but it’s coming. Don’t worry. As you were.