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Anonymous Coward
User ID: 1320527
United States
10/14/2011 12:56 AM
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[link to www.dlr.de]

The time and location of re-entry cannot be predicted precisely. At present, scientists expect the X-ray satellite, which completes an orbit around Earth  in about 90 minutes, to re-enter around between 20 and 25 October 2011. Currently, the re-entry date can only be calculated to within plus/minus three days. This time slot of uncertainty will be reduced as the date of re-entry approaches. However, even one day before re-entry, the estimate will only be accurate to within plus/minus five hours .All areas under the orbit of ROSAT, which extends to 53 degrees northern and southern latitude could be affected by its re-entry. The bulk of the debris will impact near the ground track of the satellite. However, isolated fragments could fall to Earth in a 80 kilometre wide path along the track.

User ID: 1275364
10/14/2011 09:39 AM
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from [link to www.spaceweather.com]

"Solar activity has strongly affected ROSAT's decay. Only a few months ago, experts expected the satellite to re-enter in December. However, they did not anticipate the recent increase in sunspot count. Extreme ultraviolet radiation from sunspots has heated and "puffed up" Earth's atmosphere, accelerating the rate of orbital decay. The massive observatory now has a date with its home planet in October."

..i wonder how many other satellites this "puffed up" atmosphere is going to affect..

btw, earth's atmosphere now glows green:

Last Edited by OpenHeartMonk on 10/14/2011 09:39 AM
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