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[i]A huge piece of space debris, weighing 1400 lb (635 kg) and the size of two refrigerators, is gradually falling to Earth, giving observers on the ground a great opportunity to see it. The junk was jettisoned from the International Space Station (ISS) in 2007 and it is expected to re-enter the atmosphere later this year or early 2009. The Early Ammonia Servicer (EAS) was dropped from the ISS after a seven hour spacewalk and pushed in the opposite direction of the space station's orbit shortly before a re-boost by a Soyuz resupply vehicle. This ensured the EAS would pose no danger to the ISS or crew on future orbits. Now the container is beginning its final few months in space and the bets are on as to where it will crash to Earth...
When the EAS was jettisoned, it was barely visible to the naked eye as it sped overhead with a magnitude of +4 to +4.5. Two days ago on July 20th, veteran satellite observer Marco Langbroek of Leiden, the Netherlands reported observing the EAS at an observable magnitude of +2.0. But it is moving very fast due to its decreased altitude.
[URL=http://www.spaceweather.com/swpod2008/22jul08/31928.wmv?PHPSESSID=fc948ts7l1j0kdbgf15mj8fna2]Watch the EAS pass Altair in this high quality piece of video astronomy by Kevin Fetter (July 15th, 2008)[/URL]
Currently, the EAS can be seen over Europe, and next week North America will be able to spot it.[/i]
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