At some point today the defunct Russian satellite Kosmos-1220 will be returning to Earth, unfortunately experts have no idea where the fragments will land, although it is most likely to hit the biggest target of all, the Pacific Ocean.
‘As of February 7, 2014 the fragments are expected to fall on February 16. The exact impact time and location of the fragments from the Kosmos-1220 satellite may change due to external factors,’ said Colonel Alexei Zolotukhin.
Of course much of the 1090’s satellite will burn up upon re-entering the Earth’s atmosphere, at which point we expect it will put on a pretty light show, but some of the larger, heavier parts are still likely to partially survive the decent and make contact with Earth. Fortunately the odds are stacked in favour of it hitting water, given that most of the earth is in fact ocean, but there is always a chance, however remote that it could hit land.
Most of the satellite, which was launched into space in 1980, will burn up on re-entering the Earth’s atmosphere, David Eicher, editor of Astronomy magazine, told FoxNews.com.
‘What we have going for us is that most of the planet is covered with water, and highly populated areas are in the minority of our planet’s surface area. So it is unlikely that satellite debris will cause injuries or major damage. Still, with such a re-entry, we are playing the odds. This is a very real danger, given that a decaying orbit will carry this satellite down onto the planet.’ said Devid Eicher of Astronomy magazine when speaking with Fox News.
It’ll be interesting to see how this one plays out, and certainly worth keeping your eyes on the news for updates of its decent, because there could be some exciting photo opportunities depending on where this thing comes down.
Thank you Metro for providing us with this information.
Image courtesy of Metro.