Is the sky falling? No, it’s just the US moon lander.
according to the Daily Mail,
"After more than a week in space, the doomed Peregrine One spacecraft is set to crash back down to Earth today. At around 4pm EST (9pm GMT) on Thursday, the craft is expected to hit an uninhabited region in the South Pacific Ocean, about 400 miles south of Fiji."
Full disclosure I love everything about space. (as in the final frontier) I love the space program, I love movies like apollo 13, And I love that our national space program has decided to go back to the moon and maybe do something there.
When you start an enterprise like this, you always want to start with baby steps. So that brings us to Astrobotic and the Peregrine Lunar Lander. On January 8th, Astrobotic launched the Peregrine lunar Lander. and the mission did not go well. They had high hopes for this launch.
It all came to an end when it was discovered that there was a fuel leak shortly after it was sent on its way. (something about a bad valve) So now what?
Now this lunar Lander is on a collision course with Earth And will probably be destroyed before it could collide with other satellites.
On X, Astrobotic said,
"Our latest assessment now shows the spacecraft is on a path towards Earth, where it will likely burn up in Earth's atmosphere,"
Astrobotic went on to say.
"Ultimately, we must balance our own desire to extend Peregrine's life, operate payloads, and learn more about the spacecraft, with the risk that our damaged spacecraft could cause a problem in cislunar space,"
At this point, the best guess is that it will enter Earth's atmosphere sometime on Thursday, but we don't have a time or a location.
“The company has not released a date for its spacecraft's re-entry, but it is expected to be within the next couple of days as the mission will be brought to an end on Thursday, Astrobotic CEO John Thornton, said in the press release.”
“NASA paid more than $100 million to fly experiments on the Peregrine lander. It's part of the space agency's bid to commercialize lunar deliveries by private businesses while the government works to get astronauts back to the moon.”
So, this very well could be the most expensive firework ever to enter Earth's atmosphere. I'm a little sad and a little disappointed that it didn't pan out. I would have loved to have seen this shot succeed. But this is a real-world test and sometimes real-world of tests fail.
Better luck next time guys.
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