'Ferrari of Space' Doomed: Satellite Will Fall from Space in October

Artist’s conception of the European Space Agency’s Gravity field and steady-state Ocean Circulation Explorer (GOCE) satellite in orbit. The $450 million satellite launched in 2009 to study Earth’s gravity field in unprecedented detail and will fall to Earth in 2013.
A European satellite is facing a fiery doom next month, when it is expected to begin falling from space to end a successful mission to map Earth’s gravity. The spacecraft runs out of fuel in October, but exactly when and where it will fall to Earth isn’t yet known.
The satellite was designed to work for two years, and in that timeframe it produced the most accuratemodel of Earth’s gravityfieldever seen. GOCE also produced the first high-resolution map of the boundary between Earth’s crust and mantle.
The fiery re-entry of the Gravity field and steady-state Ocean Circulation Explorer (GOCE) satellite, which the European Space Agency has billed as the “the Ferrari of space,” will occur about two or three weeks after the satellite runs out of fuel in mid-October.


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Credit: ESA /AOES Medialab

'Ferrari of Space' Doomed: Satellite Will Fall from Space in October

Artist’s conception of the European Space Agency’s Gravity field and steady-state Ocean Circulation Explorer (GOCE) satellite in orbit. The $450 million satellite launched in 2009 to study Earth’s gravity field in unprecedented detail and will fall to Earth in 2013.

A European satellite is facing a fiery doom next month, when it is expected to begin falling from space to end a successful mission to map Earth’s gravity. The spacecraft runs out of fuel in October, but exactly when and where it will fall to Earth isn’t yet known.

The satellite was designed to work for two years, and in that timeframe it produced the most accuratemodel of Earth’s gravityfieldever seen. GOCE also produced the first high-resolution map of the boundary between Earth’s crust and mantle.

The fiery re-entry of the Gravity field and steady-state Ocean Circulation Explorer (GOCE) satellite, which the European Space Agency has billed as the “the Ferrari of space,” will occur about two or three weeks after the satellite runs out of fuel in mid-October.
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Credit: ESA /AOES Medialab

Posted 11 months ago with 334 notes
Tagged:AstronomysciencespacesatellitetechnologyGOCEESA

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