Imagine, if you will, a rocket crashing into the moon’s surface. The crash site is strange, unlike the others. The missile itself comes from an unknown location. it’s not Twilight Zone, it’s a reality. Last month, NASA revealed that a rocket of some kind crashed on the moon, with a strange impact crater.
On June 24, NASA released images of the lunar crash site, taken by the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter in May. According to the space agency, everything that hit the lunar surface occurred on March 4, after it was detected in a path with the moon in late 2021. The moon is covered in craters, many of the effects of previous rockets, but this new one is unique because it is two separate, overlapping impact points. Whatever hit the moon, it did so in such a way that an 18-meter-high crater intertwined with a 16-meter-high crater. As noted by NASA, this indicates that each end of the rocket contains a significant amount of mass, which is not uncommon for these types of collisions.
But no one knows where the missile came from. NASA is able to say that the rocket was at least in space late last year, on its way to a difficult crash with the Moon. But who sent it or why? This is a puzzle. And outside of NASA, US Space Command, the Space Force, and even the broader Department of Defense are all quiet. There are theories, but nothing has been confirmed.
“Since the origin of the rocket body remains uncertain, the dual nature of the crater may indicate its identity,” NASA said. in her statement.
And no, it probably isn’t extraterrestrials. This is not so Independence Day.
Why does NASA not know? It’s NASA, plus the moon is relatively close. The United States and its allies have enough satellites, telescopes, and tracking software to monitor what’s going on in space and from where. Missile launches can be tracked – every time North Korea tests a ballistic missile, the intelligence and military world is very quick to determine the course, range, and likely launch point. This particular incident appears to be a function of the Space Force. The service branch has guards that monitor satellites and missiles in low orbit and track their paths. The moon is a little farther away, but the Space Force is looking forward to it Expand its patrols even further. But so far, Space Force hasn’t said anything.
Why is the origin of this missile unclear? Historically, the different branches of the military and government have been rivals or at odds, but missile launches go through different areas and it seems like the kind of topic that would prompt an exchange of information. Dozens of rockets, from boosters to other components, slammed into the moon’s surface. In 2009 NASA Even deliberately bombed The moon as part of an experiment looking at potential water on the satellite. But this case appears to have been more of a coincidence than an experience.
However, there is a possible theory. The March 4 incident was reported at the time. The leading theory from scientists is that it was the third stage of the booster booster for the Chinese CHANG’E 5-T1 rocket, which was launched in 2014. The 18th Space Control Squadron, which deals with space satellite tracking, initially reported a booster The missile is on fire. upwards, but has since changed position to still in orbit. In March, the squadron gave a caliber Statement to the edgesaying that the piece of the rocket did not leave orbit, but it was not clear if this was what hit the surface of the moon.
So, is a Chinese missile the source of this strange double crater? Officials who monitor space have neither confirmed nor denied this theory. Neither the 18th Space Control Squadron nor the broader Space Force has commented on NASA images and releases at press time. But if it comes to CHANG’E 5-T1, how to create the double pit is also unclear.
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