YouTube screenshot Brad Tucker
AUSTRALIA – Debris belonging to the SpaceX Crew-1 space mission capsule – rare in size – has been found by farmers on their properties in the Snowy Mountains region of southeastern Australia. Observers wonder if Elon Musk’s company will recover them, while other pieces of the capsule could be discovered, according to experts.
The origin of two of the three pieces of debris has been confirmed by the Australian Space Agency (ASA), whose experts visited the properties of two farmers to analyze them, reports The Guardian, this Wednesday, August 3. For astrophysicist Brad Tucker, who works for the Australian National University, these discoveries are linked to the liftoff of a SpaceX Crew-1 rocket in November 2020.
They are said to be fragments of the SpaceX Dragon space cargo ship, which had been used by four astronauts to reach the International Space Station (ISS). Twenty months later, on the morning of July 9, the debris entered the atmosphere and disintegrated.
I just got back from Dalgety, NSW. I was busy confirming that parts of a @SpaceX Crew-1 Trunk capsule crashed into… https://t.co/E9LeQ2AGLK
— Brad Tucker (@btucker22)
The first time he saw one of the objects, Brad Tucker thought of “a burnt tree”. “Then you approach it, [et] it’s almost like an obelisk from outer space”, he described. On one of the pieces, he found a serial number, which helped to identify their origin.
All eyes are now on SpaceX, which has yet to officially respond. According to the astrophysicist, discussions are now taking place to find out if Elon Musk’s company will come and recover these capsule fragments. And above all, on possible responsibilities if future debris causes damage. “If it had landed on your house, it would have done a lot of damage”said Jock Wallace, a farmer who discovered a piece of the capsule on his land.
However, according to experts, the risks of falling remains of space objects on human beings or inhabited places remain low, reports ScienceAlert. On the other hand, scientists are sounding the alarm on the multiplication of space debris with the rise of tourism in space.
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