Eco Alert: NASA’s “Glory” Climate-Change Satellite Crashes Near Antarctic

Glory Satellite Launch

NASA's latest casualty is Glory, a state of the art satellite designed to monitor the effects of aerosol particles on the climate. Because we don't know exactly how much of the aerosol is anthropogenic, and how much is natural, NASA's Gavin Schmidt calls the failed satellite launch "one of the most important in ages." About three minutes into the flight, telemetry flashed a warning that the fairing – the part of the rocket which covers the satellite on top of the launcher – did not separate properly. This would have made the rocket too heavy and therefore too slow to achieve its intended 700-kilometer orbit.


NASA experts believe It would probably have fallen into the ocean near the Antarctic, but this has yet to be confirmed. Japan's GOSAT, which did launch successfully, is taking similar measurements.

 

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