Residents of the northwestern United States witnessed a light show Thursday night after a SpaceX rocket crashed while returning to the atmosphere.
Some believe it was a meteor, and the interpretation is completely different. The National Weather Service (NWS) reported that an impressive light show that lit up the sky over the northwestern United States Thursday night was likely due to debris from a SpaceX rocket returning to the atmosphere.
“The bright, widely reported objects in the sky were debris from the second stage of the Falcon 9 missile,” the Seattle Weather Service wrote on Twitter, noting that more detailed data is expected to officially confirm this information.
Videos posted on social media show a dense array of bright spots and light corridors, slowly moving across the sky before disappearing, with some internet users claiming that this phenomenon could be a meteor shower or even, as a joke, an alien invasion.
“A missile falls into the atmosphere at a speed of more than 27,000 km / h.”
to me Local media, The phenomenon was noticed after 9:00 PM (04:00 GMT Friday), and videos were released from Washington and Oregon, both of which are located in the northwestern United States.
According to the Seattle National Weather Service, it is more likely to be caused by space debris than meteorites, which will move much faster.
“What people see is a missile plunging into the atmosphere at speeds greater than 27,000 km / h and crashing from the heat generated at that speed. The parts that melt easily explode first and the denser pieces remain for a longer period, giving an appearance,” said Jonathan McDowell of the Harvard Center for Astrophysics The incandescent parts go in the same direction. ”Jonathan McDowell added,“ This is a mistake, and this type of SpaceX missile usually performs an anti-absorption combustion process. ”
No ground damage reported
Absorption combustion is a maneuver that involves igniting propellants of a spacecraft to slow it down and initiate its descent into the atmosphere where it decays in a controlled manner.
“We knew it was going to crash yesterday or today, but we didn’t know when exactly,” said Jonathan McDowell, adding that “a few hours are enough to fly around the world twice, so we had no idea in advance where it would crash.”
No damage has been reported yet, and the Seattle National Weather Service said the phenomenon is unlikely to cause an impact.