In a morning, a farmer in Hanford, California, went out, as regular, to check his walnut orchard. But that time it was not the usual stroll out he did dozens of time before. Right in the middle of his farm, the guy bumped into a big piece of space junk, a weird-looking hunk of mangled metal. Even more, the authorities identified what that object was and where it came from.
The big piece of space junk endured the high temperatures and forces triggered by its friction with the Earth’s atmosphere in its way down to the Californian farm where it violently hit the ground right in the middle of the walnut orchard where the farmer discovered the mysterious metal sphere.
After some research, the authorities managed to identify where the space junk object came from and to which company it belonged to. Accordingly, it was a piece of the defunct Iridium Satellite #70 which orbited the Earth for about 20 years.
Big Piece Of Space Junk Crashed Into Californian Farm
As reported by the local news agency, the farmer called the Sheriff’s department to seek guidance on what to do next. The authorities came in and examined the strange space object, but they only discovered small pieces of the puzzle. However, the law enforcement officers contacted the nearby Vandenberg Air Force Base whose representatives identified the big piece of space junk, eventually.
According to them, the metallic object belonged to the now-defunct Iridium Satellite #70. Iridium space company confirmed that. As reported by the company’s representatives, the Iridium Satellite #70 had been in orbit for two decades before ending its mission. As it happens with almost every orbital object out there, the satellite reentered the Earth’s atmosphere where the specialists of Iridium expected the spacecraft to burn completely.
Obviously, that didn’t happen, and a big part of the satellite managed to survive and crash into a Californian farm, near Hanford.
With over seven years of experience in online journalism, Vadim is passionate about everything related to science and the environment. For us, he will thus cover climate, environment, and science news, among others.