Another Month, Another Big Old Satellite Crashing to Earth

I hope you're enjoying your October! Unfortunately, it's time to return to your designated space-junk shelter, as sometime today (or tomorrow), a German satellite called ROSAT (short for Roentgen Satellite) will be crashing to earth, "into the ocean or over land in North and South America and South East Asia."

Just last month, the Upper Atmospheric Research Satellite came down somewhere in the South Pacific, and not on top of your house, as I predicted at the time. Most of ROSAT is likely to break up on re-entry, but the large mirror will probably stay together, and land right on your head, if you live in the Americas. (Wear a helmet):

Travelling at a speed of around 17,400 miles per hour, it is expected to scatter over a 50 mile wide somewhere on its orbit track, which takes it to latitudes of 53 degrees north and south of the equator.

The satellite can complete an orbit of the earth in around 90 minutes and it could see debris crashing into the ocean or over land in North and South America and South East Asia.

Anyway, if you need to leave the house tomorrow, just keep an eye out for an enormous 1.7-ton mirror hurtling from the sky! It should look kind of like your entire life flashing before your eyes.

[Telegraph]