The probable piece of space junk known as WT1190F is causing serious buzz online, because WT1190F is scheduled to approach Earth on Friday, November 13. The ominous-sounding date of Friday the 13th along with the mysterious nature of WT1190F has folks more curious about WT1190F, which might be viewable online. According to Slooh, even though WT1190F is scheduled to crash land on Earth on Friday the 13th, it might not be a bad crash landing. WT1190F making it back into the Earth’s atmosphere will be an opportunity for scientists to discover how space junk changes and morphs — or burns up — upon re-entry into the Earth’s atmosphere. Watch WTF1190F live on Friday the 13th here.
— Wes Hellyar (@WesHellyar) November 12, 2015
WT1190F has literally been on scientists’ radars for years, with the projected path to WT1190F’s landing predicted to be over the Indian Ocean, approximately 62 miles from the coast of Sri Lanka, reports Business Insider.
“An object of unknown origin is on a collision course with Earth, set to crash land on Friday the 13th in November, but while a crash landing of any kind would normally be seen as bad news, this one might just mean good luck for scientists hoping to learn more about how these objects interact with our atmosphere.”
Accordingly, the expected arrival of the space junk called WT1190F has created a Sri Lanka-based no fly-zone and fishing ban, reports CBC.ca. WT1190F is believed to be part of an old rocket body that propelled a rocket to space and was done away with, but experts aren’t taking any chances with WT1190F. Planes and boats in the area are being warned to avoid the path of WT1190F on Friday, November 13.
“The object in question is a mysterious piece of space debris, appropriately named WT1190F – or WTF – which is expected to crash about 100km off the coast of Sri Lanka on the unlucky day. While there is no way to know exactly what the object is, scientists at the European Space Agency believe it is a piece of a rocket body coming back to Earth.”
Even though the WT1190F show is expected to come during the daylight hours on Friday the 13th, the show that WT1190F provides could still be pretty amazing, says astronomer Nicholas Moskovitz, as reported by NMosko.com. The WT1190F re-entry will occur when the sun is up; however, WT1190F could be as bright as a full moon — therefore Moskovitz states that WT1190F watchers might still be able to see WT1190F on the 13th.
— CBC News (@CBCNews) November 12, 2015
On Twitter, lots of buzz about WT1190F is heating up as Friday the 13th approaches.
“ESA has been tracking the orbit of this particular object ever since it became apparent that it would be falling into the atmosphere. It had originally been orbiting the Earth from beyond the moon, when that orbit degraded. The crash landing actually offers scientists a chance to study the way our atmosphere interacts with objects upon re-entry. Much of the object will actually burn up in the atmosphere”
Circa 1989, NASA created the above photo rendering to give people an idea of just how much space junk is floating around the Earth’s orbit. Approximately 8,500 objects bigger than around 3.9 inches are floating around the Earth, with 150,000 bigger than one centimeter. With so much space junk floating around the orbit of Earth, it’s no wonder objects like WT1190F are scheduled to make re-entry.
(Photo by NASA/Getty Images)