Here's something troubling to start your afternoon: North Korea launched a new satellite into space earlier this week and now it's apparently tumbling out of control amid all the other satellites that the world relies on.
That's not really all that unexpected, but after successfully reaching orbital space on Monday there was some degree of hope--even in the midst of condemnation for what the global community sees as a thinly veiled ballistic missile test--that North Korean engineers have a clue what they are doing. It's becoming increasingly clear that they do not.
The satellite has an unstable trajectory, American officials have said. It could come crashing back to Earth. And there's a remote chance it could collide with something else in orbit. More on this as it develops, but for now it looks like North Korea's space program is off to quite a shaky start.
North Korea launches a tumble weed into space.
I am so NOT surprised, lol.
I recall quite well that the US space program had a shaky start. The joke was, "Vanguard, a typical government employee. It won't work and you can't fire it."
The North Koreans will persevere and develop an ICBM. Then everyone will be whining about why didn't someone do something?
Look, it fell to earth! www.youtube.com/watch?v=fgTyiaDmytw
It's probably not a satellite anyway it's probably a nuclear weapon in space they wish to drop on our heads--at any moment.
Um, would it be wrong if we just go ahead and shoot it down. It seems out of control and we be doing a service for all the other satellites. Obvious N.Korea does not possess the means to manage their own rockets, lol.
It would be our N.Korea Christmas present to them. ;)
Once it is in orbit, it becomes a problem to try to destroy. An explosion or collision could turn it into a cloud of debris that would be even more threatening to other satellites. If it is out-of-control, it should be treated like other space-junk that needs to be de-orbited.
Who cares about the satellite, they'll soon be able to strike continental USA with nuclear bombs, that's the real message.
I agree with Robot. North Korea has no idea what they are doing, and are decades behind the U.S., Russia, and China, etc. Their "satellite" should be shot down before it does any damage.
Rather ironically, the North Koreans are more likely to accidentally damage their enemies with their satellite than they are with ICBMs.
If we did shoot down their satellite, we are doing a good dead for others and a show of power too. ;)
Does anybody else get the eerie feeling that this will hit something really important and expensive and finally spark the war everybody has been waiting for?
This is kinda silly, most things in orbit have the capability to adjust themselves should this thing appear to be heading for them even if North Korea's doesn't. There are plenty of other unstable objects in orbit that haven't hit anything. Additionally the U.S has shown the capability to shoot down wayward satellites a few years ago and they didn't explode into a cloud of debris and damage everything. I'm sure they won't shoot it down, just move out of its way. It's much more likely to fall and hurt someone than damage anything up there. The surface of the earth is a infinitesimally smaller area than orbit.
Nice to see americans soil their pants while watching a North Korean satellite fly over USA. This is worth all the investments they made so far and more.
A piece of North Korea can reach any part of USA at the push of a button. Cudos NK. Make those US asses pay some respect.
Why shoot it down when the US can just go pick it up with the X37B that is still up there.
Well a small minded person's first idea would be to shoot down the satellite, but we need to think deeper. Why not help North Korea create more advanced technology to help their military in space. By the way Robot spelling mistakes are not acceptable on Popsci. It is deed not dead......
The satellite really wasn't the point of the launch. It was a political move for the new leader to consolidate his hold on power. The threat of NK actually having any capability of hitting US soil I would say it still doesn't exist. If they were stupid enough to launch something at us it would most likely be shot down before it could do any damage and of course it would give us all the justification we needed to remove the threat all together. As for their orbitally challanged space junk, I say unless there is a clear threat to other space assets why waste the money or effort taking it out.
How cute, I have been copied.
Just so you know, 69 comments are YOURS!
To the idiot that said way to go N korea, I am assuming he is a brit. Now here is the thing everyone hates N korea if they attack THE US South Korea Japan anyone its going to spark a huge war that your country will be involved in pretty much every country that hates them would jump in. Being as you made a comment like that would also tell me you would be to much of a coward to join the military and fight. Now that being said, WE the US have the capability to stop any missle from hitting else well before it posses a threat. We are more advnaced in this technology. We would then plus every other country that can not stand those bastards would wipe N Korea off the face of the planet. The only thing we would really need to worry about is another war that will eat away at our pockets.
(1) NK would have trouble hitting the US with a missile, much less aim at a particular target.
(2) The NK missiles at this point would likely dissolve upon reintry.
(3) We can blow up stuff in space - the problem is that just spreads the mess arround. It is easier to a rock than a handful of gravel.
(4) NK has only two launchpads capable of firing these rockets. NK does not manufacture these rockets - they assemble them from foriegn purchased parts. We could with two cruise missilies disable their launchpads before they could even get a rocket on them.
(5) NK's nukes are too large for the rockets they have.
(6) Even IF NK got a nuke up there, if it got here, if it survived reintry, and if hit somewhere important - they could only do it once and the result would be the imediate liquidation of NK. Russia and China might even do it FOR us to keep us from doing it ourself in a gesture of "it was THAT guy, not us!"
(7) If they were a threat, we would put have the aegis destroyers closer to their coast and would have shot this down before it got a mile off the ground (or have plowed the launchpads beforehand).
(8) The guy who wants to put a nuke in a missile isn't a threat, he is a yappy dog looking for attention. The guy to worry about is the one trying to put one on a pickup truck.
"Being as you made a comment like that would also tell me you would be to much of a coward to join the military and fight."
Fight for what? For the imbeciles from the federal government?
"We would then plus every other country that can not stand those bastards would wipe N Korea off the face of the planet."
I can not stand americans myself. Why don't you wipeout yourself for me please.
It's nice to see how these politically charged articles seem to bring out the best in people.
Just adding flames here..
@Robot69 keep it up... you have very intuitive responses... so far.
Robot you have fallin from your once pragmatical views, to annunaki crap and all other craziness... recently you have been so far off, that I generally skip your comments. For someone who makes sure they comment on EVERY popsci article... You tend to not include science in your responses. Robot69 is doing your job better. Dont be salty about it.
In your assessment me, would also include yourself, your comments of your profile too? You do realize anyone can access your profile and your comments. LOL
If you do not agree or like some of my comments, fine. And if you like other people comments, that is fine too.
I like that people comment and hope more people do comment more often.
Take care. ;)
How cute, I have been copied. Just so you know, Robot comments are YOURS!
You also realize you didnt make any sense just right?.. ok.
All I was saying is that you need a reality check, and not to cry so much. thats is all.
I lurk Popsci all the time, I see all/most of you comments, beyond checking your profile or whatever. If your going to speak, just make it relevant. Sounds like the "robot" needs a reboot!
@ ClauseitNERD Thank you for understanding the problem infecting our community. I respect everyone that comments on this website, but when someone tries to ignite a fight through commenting, that is just sad.
@Get your facts straight before commenting please.
Aw, poor guys can't do it right... that must be embarrassing. LOL
@highermorals...face to face; I'd greet you with a firm Kentuckian handshake. welcome you to try some of the best bourbon in the world...show you the best places for catfish on the Ky river...hand over a plate of some of the best country cooking...offer an honest game of horseshoes.
But only if your handshake was firm and you could speak while looking me in the eye.
If I were to judge you by your post (which I wouldn't) I would surely conclude that you could do neither.
you are being romantic.
nice try though.
...I thought so.