a Stray tool bag dropped by an astronaut on the International Space Station (ISS) spacewalk will be visible from the ground as it flies over the UK on Tuesday.
The kit bag was lost by NASA astronauts Jasmine Moghbeli and Loral O’Hara while securing solar panels to their spacecraft. ISS400 miles above Earth earlier this month.
It has already been seen by astronauts aboard the space station orbiting the Earth about five minutes ahead of the ISS.
But astronomers on the ground found the bag shining like a slow-moving star several minutes ahead of the ISS’s orbit.
Experts say the bag is incredibly bright, shining just below the limit of visibility to the naked eye, but that amateurs should be able to spot it with binoculars or a telescope.
Weather permitting, Brits living in London will likely see the bag between 8pm and 8:11pm on Tuesday night. The best time to see them is between 5:27pm and 5:37pm on Sunday, November 26th.
Astronomers with the Virtual Telescope Project discovered the object from the ground for the first time last week.
Project founder Gianluca Masi posted the image, adding: “When tracked by the telescope, this object looked like a sharp point of light in the center.”
This toolbag has been given the U.S. Space Force designation number 58229/1998–067WC to help track whether it poses a threat to the ISS or satellites.
This isn’t the first time Butterfinger’s astronauts have lost equipment in space.
In 1965, NASA astronaut Ed White He lost his spare gloves during a spacewalk outside the Gemini 4 spacecraft.
In 2006, another NASA astronaut, Piers Sellers, lost his spatula while repairing a heat shield in space, two years later. Heidemarie Stefanisin Piper I lost my tool bag while repairing gear that was stuck in a solar panel.
In this case, the toolbag remained visible in front of the ISS for several months after it was lost.
The latest failure on November 1 was accidentally photographed by Japanese astronaut Satoshi Furukawa as he was photographing Mount Fuji as it passed over his home country.
NASA joked that the crew should have attached tracking devices to their bags so they could retrieve the lost kit the next time they orbited.
The astronauts had planned to remove and stow a communications electronics box called a radio frequency group, but time ran out.
While assessing the feasibility of this work, the pair lifted the insulation to get a better view of the work, and it is believed that one bag was accidentally left behind during this process.
“During the operation, one of the tool bags was inadvertently lost. Flight controllers located the tool bag using the station’s external camera,” said NASA spokesman Mark Garcia.
“No equipment was required for the remainder of the spacewalk. Mission control analyzed the bag’s trajectory and determined that the risk of re-contacting the station was low, the crew and the space station were safe, and no action was necessary. It was judged.”
website N2Y0.com Tracking tool bags.