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A 40 kg remnant of SpaceX's Dragon spacecraft likely fell onto a farm in Canada

A 40 kg remnant of SpaceX's Dragon spacecraft likely fell onto a farm in Canada
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Just a month after a piece of the ISS pierced the roof of a house in Florida, we have a new case of falling space debris. This time the buildings were not damaged because the piece of space debris landed in a field on a farm in Canada.

A farmer from the province of Saskatchewan, Canada, found a heavy piece of burnt metal weighing about 40 kg on his fields and suspected it was space debris. Although, as a non-specialist in the space industry, he didn't know that for sure.

Local reports of possible space debris reached a group of astronomy professors. They linked the burnt fragments to the reentry of the SpaceX Dragon spacecraft into Earth's atmosphere in February as part of the Axiom-3 mission. The SpaceX Dragon spacecraft undocked from the ISS over the Pacific Ocean west of Ecuador on February 7 and returned the crew of astronauts to Earth after landing off the coast of Daytona, Florida, on February 9.

The SpaceX Dragon spacecraft consists of a reusable crew capsule and a disposable cargo module that is jettisoned before reentry into Earth's atmosphere. It enters the atmosphere separately and is intended to burn up in its dense layers. However, this time it ended up on a farm in Canada several months after the spacecraft completed its mission.

This is not the first time SpaceX space debris has landed in a populated area. In July 2022, another burned piece of metal was found on farmland in Australia, also suspected to be debris from a SpaceX Dragon cargo module.

As the space industry continues to grow, so do the risks of being hit by remnants of a spacecraft. According to the ESA, on average 200 to 400 human-made objects reenter Earth's atmosphere each year. Space agencies typically recognize a probability threshold of 1 in 10,000 for the risk of accidents in the case of a single uncontrolled reentry into the atmosphere.

Source: gizmodo

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