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Re: To the Sun

>If it wasn't scheduled to crash in the day time, wouldn't it miss the sun,
>possible hitting the moon?  I never did understand that stuff.

Daytime is a function of where you are on the planet -- it's always daytime
somewhere -- and the moon orbits the earth at a distance of about 240,000
miles.  The earth and moon together orbit the sun at a distance of about 93
million miles.  If we propelled an object (like Mir or anything else)
toward the sun and missed, it would enter a comet-like highly elliptical
orbit and cycle back and forth every few months or so.  The odds of it
coming anywhere near the earth or the moon again are vanishingly small.
There's also a remote chance that it could impact either Mercury or Venus
if it passes close enough to either planet's orbital plane.  Very small
probabilities in any case -- it would most likely continue to orbit for
thousands if not millions of years, until solar drag slowed it down and
caused enough orbital decay to make it strike the chromosphere of the sun.

             --... ...--  -.. . -.- -.. ..... -... .. ...-
           Bruce Bostwick  KD5BIV    Austin, TX  Grid EM10DH
                 Technician Plus Amateur Radio Operator
 ARRL / UT ARC VP / Austin ARC / Austin Repeater Org. / Travis Co. ARES
   http://ccwf.cc.utexas.edu/~lihan/  mailto:lihan@ccwf.cc.utexas.edu
          http://www.qsl.net/~kd5biv  mailto:kd5biv@qsl.net

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