Broken Russian spy satellite cascades to Earth in ball of flames above US

Dramatic footage shows a failed Russian spy satellite erupt into flames and streak across the skies above the US.

The Kosmos-2551 was incinerated in the Earth's atmosphere and put on an incredible display for thousands of people as it had one final fiery journey on Wednesday (October 20).

In the clip, recorded by skywatcher Stanley Waldrup, the bright object flashes in the night sky with an impressive tail in its wake.

A smaller part of the satellite seems to be trailing off slightly to the side, so it seems like it is already breaking off into different chunks as it is destroyed by the friction from the atmosphere.

The clip was recorded in Michigan, US, at around 12:45 am and has since been shared on YouTube by the American Meteor Society and watched thousands of times.

One impressed viewer said: "Beautiful! I saw a few tonight but with the full moon and clouds it was difficult."

The reconnaissance satellite was launched on September 9 but didn't change orbit once, leading astronomers to predict it had failed and would come tumbling back down in the near future.

Jonathan McDowell, an astronomer at the Center for Astrophysics, calculated Kosmos-2551 would re-enter roughly at the time it was seen burning in the skies.

It was such a small satellite that it wouldn't pose a threat, he said.

He wrote on Twitter: "It is thought to be only about 500 kg and no debris is expected to reach the ground."

This comes after NASA launched two probes to give new insight into asteroids and how we can potentially deflect an oncoming planet-killer.

  • Mystery as horrified beach walker finds bones of 'child or small adult' on sand dunes

It's hoped a giant asteroid would be detected before it wiped out civilisation, so it could be nudged away from our planet.

Meanwhile, a former US Air Force photographer claimed he was part of a UFO cover-up and says mysterious craft would investigate the military weapons.

And Londoners reckoned they'd spotted a UFO that looked like a Dementor from Harry Potter.

To stay up to date with all the latest news, make sure you sign up to one of our newsletters here.

Source: Read Full Article