A “rogue” rocket crashed into the moon on March 4, 2022, creating a new crater, scientists say. The origin of the missile has not been confirmed. NASA and other agencies have said they are continuing to investigate the incident, but experts say it’s no big deal. The lunar collision occurred around 7:25 a.m. E, according to National Geographic.
The rocket has been in space since around 2015, drifting toward the moon, scientists told National Geographic. The collision had been predicted by astronomers. “It’s not a big deal with the current occupation of the moon, which is currently population: robots, a few dozen; people, zero. And maybe alien mutants bred from the human poop left there. There’s not much to hit, Harvard-Smithsonian Institute for Astrophysics astronomer Jonathan McDowell told National Geographic.
Here’s what you need to know about what’s happening on the moon on March 4, 2022:
The space debris hit the far side of the moon and the impact was invisible from Earth
Astronomer Bill Gray was the first to spot the rocket. Gray, who leads Project Pluto, told The Atlantic the impact of the rocket debris likely created a new crater about 20 meters or 65 feet wide. “It would almost completely cover a basketball court,” he told The Atlantic. The space debris impacted the lunar surface on the far side of the moon and the impact was invisible from Earth.
“We didn’t expect to be able to get a picture of the actual impact. There are two spacecraft that take pictures of the far side of the moon, NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) and India’s Chandrayaan-2. These will be able to find the crater. (Since it’s on the other side, any telescopes we have on Earth have no chance at all.) These spacecraft can see a specific part of the moon about once a month, so we really should have been lucky for them to get to the right one Time to be in the right place to see the impact. (Repositioning them isn’t a big option; they don’t have that much fuel.) And we weren’t that lucky,” Gray wrote on his website.
National Geographic wrote in March: “The rogue missile was completely obliterated, cratering the lunar surface and launching a cloud of sharp, corrosive dust into orbit that can linger for hours. However, people couldn’t see the action — the rocket impacted on the far side of the moon in the 350-mile-wide Hertzsprung Crater, and lunar orbiters didn’t see the rocket’s crash.”
There was speculation that the rocket was part of a Chinese spacecraft or part of a SpaceX Falcon9
There was initial speculation that the debris was part of a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket, but astronomers then discovered that the upper stage of that rocket, launched in 2015 by Elon Musk-owned company, contained a
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration satellite that flew into space had finally orbited the sun, according to National Geographic.
Scientists now believe the rocket is part of a Chinese spacecraft on the Chang’e 5-T1 mission, National Geographic reported. However, Chinese officials said the missile deorbited and burned. So there is no definitive answer as to where the space junk came from. US Space Command said in a statement to the media: “While US Space Command can confirm that the CHANG’E 5-T1 rocket body was never deorbited, we can confirm the country of origin of the rocket body that could hit the moon , to not confirm.”
Michelle Hanlon, a University of Mississippi-based space advocate and founder of the lunar conservation nonprofit For All Moonkind, told National Geographic, “We need to make sure we travel to space responsibly. That means making sure we’re doing the right things – finding out where our rockets are going and making sure we don’t just start throwing stuff on the moon.”
https://heavy.com/news/what-happened-to-the-moon-on-march-4-2022/ What happened to the moon on March 4, 2022?