It is a mysterious space junk, probably some outdated rocket or space junk that is heading to crash on Earth, to be precise in the Indian Ocean off Sri Lanka but the piece is supposed to burn off before hitting the ground zero, said scientists warding off any room for rumours or doomsday advocates.
Called WT1190F, the space junk will hit earth on November 13 at 06:19 GMT (11:49 local; 07:19 CET) on 13 November 2015, about 65 miles away from the Sri Lanka’s southern tip into the Indian Ocean, according to European Space Agency (ESA). The WTF has been touted as unidentified flying object (UFO) since its main body was not proved yet and it measures 3 to 6 feet long and is hollow, usually the kind of pieces used in our satellites, which means it could be a dead satellite.
The Catalina Sky Survey, which scans the space for approaching comets and asteroids, found the WT1190F, which could be part of discarded rocket or satellite was essentially space debris or junk that could be spiralling down to hit Earth. Some scientists suggest that it could be part of NASA’s Apollo program.
A mysterious object, which researchers have named as WT1190F, is expected to enter the Earth’s atmosphere and crash into the Indian Ocean next month if it is not burned completely during the plunge.
Since scientists have already briefed about no damage or impact on Earth, doomsday sayers have said that the fall on 13 November, the 3rd Friday 13 this year, could be taken as a sign of the second coming of Jesus Christ and Judgement Day. But this proposition is baseless with no scientific basis.
“The object is quite small, at most a couple of metres in diameter, and a significant fraction if not all of it can be expected to completely burn up in the atmosphere,” said Tim Flohrer of European Space Agency’s Space Debris Office Darmstadt, Germany.
WT1190F was first discovered by the Mount Lemmon Survey, a participant in the Catalina Sky Survey Near-Earth Object surveying program on February 18, 2013, and described initially as UDA34A3, but was lost soon after, with an observation arc of only 5 hours. Later, it was seen by the same survey on November 29, 2013 and given the designation UW8551D and lost again, only being observed for 1 hour 35 minutes.
This time, it was re-discovered on October 3, 2015 and given the code WT1190F and its orbit calculations showed and surprised the scientists that it is not in the orbit of any known artificial satellite. Its orbit changes significantly in brightness, from magnitude 16 at perigee, to magnitude 23 at apogee. It may fall on the Earth at a magnitude of 16 or brighter, said scientists.