A chunk of space debris found in N.C. came from a SpaceX capsule, NASA says

by | Jun 28, 2024 | Science

A large chunk of space debris that was discovered last month on a mountain trail in North Carolina came from a SpaceX capsule that had journeyed to the International Space Station, NASA has confirmed.The slab of debris was found in late May by an employee of The Glamping Collective, a luxury mountaintop resort in Haywood County, near Asheville.“It was kind of wicked looking,” said Justin Clontz, who performs ground maintenance for the collective and found the slab.Now, NASA says, the roughly 3-foot piece came from the “trunk” or service module of a SpaceX Crew Dragon capsule that carried four astronauts home to Earth from the International Space Station on March 12. The charred slab of debris that came from a SpaceX capsule (The Glamping Collective)The trunk is at the base of the Crew Dragon spacecraft, under where the astronauts sit, and is typically used to carry cargo. It is covered in solar panels that provide power “during flight and while on-station,” according to SpaceX’s website.That section of the vehicle is jettisoned shortly before the capsule re-enters Earth’s atmosphere. NASA said the trunk was expected to burn up fully in the atmosphere, but its discovery, along with several others, suggest parts of the vehicle are capable of surviving the fiery trip.SpaceX did not immediately return a request for comment.The piece Clontz found was charred and covered in carbon fiber weaving. It weighs about 90 pounds — too awkward and big for one person to carry — and he said he wasn’t initially sure if it was safe to touch.“It’s just something that you don’t normally see,” Clontz said. “I’ve seen spaceships and stuff on TV, but the average person doesn’t get to see it up close.”Some smaller pieces of debris were also found in two residents’ yards in nearby towns, according to local news reports.In its statement, NASA said it was “unaware of any structural damage or injuries resulting from these findings.” The charred slab of debris that came from a SpaceX capsule (The Glamping Collective)NASA said the debris was from SpaceX’s Crew-7 mission, which launched to space on Aug. 26, 2023, then returned after a six-month expedition at the space station.Last month, a piece of suspected trunk debris from a separate SpaceX mission was found in a farmer’s field in Saskatchewan …

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[mwai_chat context=”Let’s have a discussion about this article:nnA large chunk of space debris that was discovered last month on a mountain trail in North Carolina came from a SpaceX capsule that had journeyed to the International Space Station, NASA has confirmed.The slab of debris was found in late May by an employee of The Glamping Collective, a luxury mountaintop resort in Haywood County, near Asheville.“It was kind of wicked looking,” said Justin Clontz, who performs ground maintenance for the collective and found the slab.Now, NASA says, the roughly 3-foot piece came from the “trunk” or service module of a SpaceX Crew Dragon capsule that carried four astronauts home to Earth from the International Space Station on March 12. The charred slab of debris that came from a SpaceX capsule (The Glamping Collective)The trunk is at the base of the Crew Dragon spacecraft, under where the astronauts sit, and is typically used to carry cargo. It is covered in solar panels that provide power “during flight and while on-station,” according to SpaceX’s website.That section of the vehicle is jettisoned shortly before the capsule re-enters Earth’s atmosphere. NASA said the trunk was expected to burn up fully in the atmosphere, but its discovery, along with several others, suggest parts of the vehicle are capable of surviving the fiery trip.SpaceX did not immediately return a request for comment.The piece Clontz found was charred and covered in carbon fiber weaving. It weighs about 90 pounds — too awkward and big for one person to carry — and he said he wasn’t initially sure if it was safe to touch.“It’s just something that you don’t normally see,” Clontz said. “I’ve seen spaceships and stuff on TV, but the average person doesn’t get to see it up close.”Some smaller pieces of debris were also found in two residents’ yards in nearby towns, according to local news reports.In its statement, NASA said it was “unaware of any structural damage or injuries resulting from these findings.” The charred slab of debris that came from a SpaceX capsule (The Glamping Collective)NASA said the debris was from SpaceX’s Crew-7 mission, which launched to space on Aug. 26, 2023, then returned after a six-month expedition at the space station.Last month, a piece of suspected trunk debris from a separate SpaceX mission was found in a farmer’s field in Saskatchewan …nnDiscussion:nn” ai_name=”RocketNews AI: ” start_sentence=”Can I tell you more about this article?” text_input_placeholder=”Type ‘Yes'”]
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