Sky is Falling

NASA Satellite Crashes

NASA’s CO2 monitoring mission suffered a major setback this morning when its latest satellite plunged from the sky, crashing into the Indian Ocean near Antarctica. The satellite, known as the Orbiting Carbon Observatory, was jetting through the atmosphere to join a tandem of five earth-observing satellites called the A-Train, when its nose cone failed to disengage, leaving extra mass that made continued upward thrust impossible. Despite the catastrophe, NASA is determined to press on with the $278 million mission: “We're not stopping the global warming and carbon dioxide research because of this" a spokesman noted. Luckily, Obama’s stimulus package has allocated $400 million towards earth science--more than enough to replace the toasted satellite. Interestingly, OCO's crash is the second satellite crash this month, following a February 13 collision between American and Russian satellites.