According to German space agency the 21 year old Roentgen Satellite, or ROSAT, that reentered Earth’s atmosphere on Saturday (October 22) at 9:50 p.m. EDT (0150 GMT Sunday, October 23), came down over the Bay of Bengal in the northeast Indian Ocean. Until now it isn’t known whether any fragments of the 2.7-ton satellite reached Earth’s surface after its fiery trip through the atmosphere. The debris was expected to fall over a 50-mile (80-kilometer) track of the Earth’s surface. ROSAT was launched in June 1990 to conduct an all sky survey with its X-ray telescope. The spacecraft was officially shut down in February 1999. ROSAT’s fall came about a month after a defunct NASA climate satellite also fallen to Earth at the end of its life.
[ad name=”Google Adsense-3 11″] NASA’s Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite, or UARS, reentered the atmosphere on September 24 and plunged into the Pacific Ocean, well away from the North American coastline.