October 18, 2011 By Jessica Mulholland
Remember about a month ago when the 6.5-ton Atmosphere Research Satellite fell back to Earth? Well it’s happening again.
This time, the German Aerospace Center (DLR) expects that the approximately 2.6-ton German Roentgen satellite (ROSAT) -- an X-ray observatory launched in 1990 to perform an all-sky survey of X-ray sources -- will re-enter the Earth’s atmosphere sometime between October 21 and October 24.
The DLR also anticipates a “dangerous” re-entry, saying that 30 individual pieces weighing a total of 1.7 tons could reach the Earth’s surface at more than 17,000 miles per hour.
Image courtesy of the German Aerospace Center.
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