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20-year-old Military Weather Satellite Apparently Exploded in Orbit

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posted on Mar, 1 2015 @ 04:43 PM
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spacenews.com


WASHINGTON — A 20-year-old military weather satellite apparently exploded in orbit Feb. 3 following what the U.S. Air Force described as a sudden temperature spike.

The “catastrophic event” produced 43 pieces of space debris, according to Air Force Space Command, which disclosed the loss of the satellite Feb. 27 in response to questions from SpaceNews.

The satellite, Defense Meteorological Satellite Program Flight 13, was the oldest continuously operational satellite in the DMSP weather constellation.



Air Force Space Command said DMSP-F13’s power subsystem experienced “a sudden spike in temperature” followed by “an unrecoverable loss of attitude control.” As DMSP operators were deciding to “render the vehicle safe” the Joint Space Operations Center at Vandenberg Air Force Base, California, identified a debris field near the satellite.

The Air Force said it is continuing to track the debris and will issue conjunction warnings if necessary.


So, ATS, did it die of natural causes or is someone testing their satellite killer weapons systems?




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posted on Mar, 1 2015 @ 04:46 PM
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a reply to: Elton

Sounds like a laser test.



posted on Mar, 1 2015 @ 05:06 PM
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Air Force Space Command said DMSP-F13’s power subsystem experienced “a sudden spike in temperature” followed by “an unrecoverable loss of attitude control.”



It must have had one Hell of an "attitude" !!

What are the temperature fluctuations in space anyway?



Maybe Iran is more advanced than previously thought



posted on Mar, 1 2015 @ 05:07 PM
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Maybe the US is testing some new technology on old satellites that have equipment on them that could be used to monitor what is happening. That is an option as to what happened. It could be some sort of laser weapon as someone mentioned.



posted on Mar, 1 2015 @ 05:07 PM
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Ever read "The First Six Hours of WW3" scary stuff...



posted on Mar, 1 2015 @ 05:07 PM
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originally posted by: Zaphod58
a reply to: Elton

Sounds like a laser test.


Or a really big magnifying glass?



posted on Mar, 1 2015 @ 05:08 PM
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a reply to: xuenchen

Ground based lasts that can cause a satellite to explode like this are beyond a nation like Iran. It would also be really obvious where it was. If it was a laser, or something similar it was Russia, China, or a classified US test.



posted on Mar, 1 2015 @ 05:09 PM
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a reply to: rickymouse

It's a twenty year old backup satellite.



posted on Mar, 1 2015 @ 05:10 PM
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a reply to: Bedlam

That too. Maybe there's a secret eye piece on Hubble and someone left it open.



posted on Mar, 1 2015 @ 05:59 PM
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It's a beautiful cover-up of the increase in meteors entering our atmosphere we will be seeing. Nope that was just space junk they'll claim..


Actually surprised this type stuff doesn't happen more often. Perhaps batteries melting down?



posted on Mar, 1 2015 @ 06:02 PM
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a reply to: Connman

Their power supplies are pretty bullet proof. When they do fail it's pretty low key and it just stops working.

Why would they need to cover meteorites entering the atmosphere?



posted on Mar, 1 2015 @ 06:07 PM
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I just had a thought that maybe this was purposely done in order to facilitate a Kessler syndrome to render LEO unapproachable.

I don't believe that, myself, but I couldn't help but think it.



posted on Mar, 1 2015 @ 06:30 PM
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I dunno the cops are pretty nigh unapproachable now.....



posted on Mar, 1 2015 @ 06:36 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58



Ground based lasts that can cause a satellite to explode like this are beyond a nation like Iran.


I don't see why Iran could not achieve tracking and stabilization of a big mirror assy up to about 1urad and associate them to a big industrial CO2 laser. In fact using a couple of them all illuminating the target and making it overheat. Just speculation on my part but having worked with optical tracking system before, it is not so hard at all and is definitively not new technology.

If my calculation are not errenous, a mirror diameter of 13meters would be required at CO2 wavelength, that's may be too big for them. But using someting like 1064nm would require "reasonable" 1.3 meters mirror... Still not impossible for a country like Iran if they have lot of money to loose.

Atmospheric turbulence compensation is another story...



posted on Mar, 1 2015 @ 06:38 PM
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a reply to: PeterMcFly

Except for the fact that power generation would be huge for a laser that big, and would require a huge facility.
edit on 3/1/2015 by Zaphod58 because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 1 2015 @ 06:38 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58
I don't know why they would do that. They do all kinds of things I don't know why they do though. I don't really think that either why i used this wink face.

I can accept simple accident But I still go with electronic failure or heat shields with a spike of heat.
What would actually explode= batteries do ,capacitors something failed on-board or it was actually outside help. What type fuel if any did it use to maintain orbit?

Do you think we will ever actually know?



posted on Mar, 1 2015 @ 06:42 PM
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It could be a test of a space based maser antisatellite weapon.
edit on b000000312015-03-01T18:43:39-06:0006America/ChicagoSun, 01 Mar 2015 18:43:39 -0600600000015 by butcherguy because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 1 2015 @ 06:43 PM
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I vote China laser.




posted on Mar, 1 2015 @ 06:44 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58



Except for the fact that post generation would be huge for a laser that big, and would require a huge facility.


What you mean by post generation?

I don't think it would need laser very enormous especially if the satellite is not designed to endure much higher irradiance than provided by the Sun in space. The satellite thermal regulation just need to be overloaded, possibly to cause overpressure in hydrazine tank or whatever control attitude.



posted on Mar, 1 2015 @ 06:47 PM
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a reply to: Connman

They usually use hydrazine. Corrosive and dangerous as hell but works great in space.



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