Danger Room’s Coverage of the Satellite Shoot-Down

Good news everybody! The debris cloud will be passing over Canada. (Note: Canadians may not be as enthusiastic)

As you probably know by now, the U.S. military is going to try to shoot down a dying satellite on Thursday, around 10:30 pm eastern time, before it plummets into the atmosphere. That’s right smack in the middle of a lunar eclipse, which should make the machine easier to track. Satellite-watchers have figured out where the Navy cruiser will take its shot — and where the debris cloud is likely to go afterwards.

The red line represents the path of the satellite. The pink shape, bounded by blue lines, is the “restricted area” above the cruisers. (The military has blocked out almost the same area, 24 hours later, in case the first shot misses.) And those yellow splotches are Hawaii. As you can see, the Navy plans to take the satellite out over the Pacific. Which is not unexpected.

More startling, veteran satellite-watcher AT says, is where the debris cloud will go. “To my considerable surprise, it’s on an ascending pass that will take the debris cloud across central Canada a few minutes later. Then across a bit of western Africa and eastern Australia.”

  • Finklebop Pinkleporkey III

    I’ll be in the air at the totality of the eclipse. I caught another total eclipse from the air a few years back and it was VERY impressive.

    We were above an unbroken blanket of clouds that was illuminated a very eerie red. I wish I could see something of the satellite this time, but that’s probably impossible since I’m landing in Phoenix.

    If our missile misses, we could ask China to shoot it down for us. They have experience.