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Originally posted by Jekka
At that altitude, there is so little oxygen that no creature can survive unaided and it is also very cold, so the ice theory may pan out, but a chunk of ice that large wouldn't just hang in the air. Very interesting post, the only reasonable(non-CT) answer that comes to my mind as a possibility is that it may have been a piece of falling space "junk". There was paint transfer from the plane to the object, whatever it was, but no paint transfer to the plane, which leads me to think that it is either space "junk" which would be an old satellite, meteor, etc, and satellites are usually not painted with anything other than maybe a reflective gloss. A drone would have been visible to the pilot long before it hit, and the angle of the dent makes it seem it came from above, probably a 30 degree angle, wish I knew what direction the plane was travelling because that would rule out artificial space debris, all satellites go the same direction, or at least any satellite that would have been old enough to fall without notice... Hope someone finds out more details to this, I am really curious now...
One evening during a Himalayan expedition, he was startled by the honking of night-flying bar-headed geese passing directly over Mount Makalu's 27,824-foot summit. This experience caused Swan to speculate that the species had originally settled in India before collisions between the tectonic plates under the Hima-layas had pushed the range up.
Several other bird species regularly brave extreme altitudes. Among them are whooper swans, which were once observed by a pilot at 27,000 feet over the Atlantic Ocean between Iceland and the European continent, and bar-tailed godwits, which have been spotted at almost 20,000 feet. And then there's the occasional hardy individual that makes a high-altitude cameo.
The highest-flying bird ever recorded was a Ruppell's griffon, a vulture with a wingspan of about 10 feet; on November 29, 1975, a Ruppell's griffon was sucked into a jet engine 37,900 feet above the Ivory Coast--more than a mile and a half higher than the summit of Mount Everest. The plane was damaged, though it landed safely.
In 1924 a yellow-billed chough, a crowlike bird that's among the highest-nesting species, followed a climbing expedition's food scraps to 26,500 feet on Everest. The avian altitude record in North America is held by a mallard, which collided with an airplane on July 9, 1963, at 21,000 feet above Elko, Nevada.
Originally posted by Beartracker16
I'm not an aeronautical engineer but I did stay at a Holiday Inn Express last night.
Originally posted by Philippines
reply to post by Zaphod58
Would you expect to see some blood when hitting a bird in a plane at those speeds? Also, what are the colors on the nosecone from, a bird?