Stardust re-entry

The sample return capsule of the Stardust spacecraft is due to land in a little under 10 hours at 10:05am GMT. Before that, in about four hours, the capsule will be remotely released and head towards the USA, entering the atmosphere at 9:57am GMT. If you live in the western states, you may have a chance of seeing the re-entry - it will be the middle of the night and should look impressive as it slams into the atmosphere at about 48,000 km/hour (28,800 miles/hour). It will be the fastest re-entry of any recorded man-made object. Worth looking out for.

If you live in Florida you shouldn't be disappointed about missing Stardust re-entry as you should get the chance to see the launch of the New Horizons mission as it heads off to Pluto. The launch window is set for the afternoon (local time) on Tuesday. Does anyone out there know the maximum distance away from the launch site that you can still see the launch from?

Posted in astro blog by Stuart on Sunday 15th Jan 2006 (00:34 UTC) | Permalink
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