A NASA satellite the size of a bus will hit the Earth sometime this afternoon – and scientists have little to no idea where it will land.
The latest projections last night were that the defunct NASA satellite would tumble to Earth from space sometime this afternoon, but because the satellite is free-falling, the space agency and the U.S. Air Force cannot make a precise prediction about when and where it will hit.
The 13,000-pound Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite, or UARS, was about 115 miles above Earth yesterday. It had been slowly falling back to the planet since it completed its mission in 2005.
Measuring 35 feet long and 15 feet in diameter, the satellite was launched into orbit aboard the space shuttle Discovery in September 1991 to study ozone and other chemicals in the Earth’s atmosphere.