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Rogue SpaceX Rocket: What’s the Worst That Can Happen?
With a few devastating tornados, fires and volcanos, 2022 has gotten off to a rocky start for many people around the globe. In online gambling terms, the good news is that the odds can only improve… right? Well, that was before we learnt that an abandoned space rocket is hurtling towards the Moon! Should we start digging an underground shelter in preparation for what’s to come?
Faster than an Online Gambling Game Upload
Here are the facts people. Sometime on Friday the 4th of March, a 14-metre-long portion of a Falcon 9 space rocket, weighing around 4.4 tons, is going to slam into the Moon. The estimated speed of impact? A mind-bending 9 288 kilometres per hour or 2.58 kilometres per second. That is more than 22 times quicker than the fastest ever speed set with a Formula One racing car!
When you consider it takes around 20 seconds for a Springbok Casino game to load in your browser, then that rocket is zooming along. In fact, by the time your online gambling fix is locked and loaded on your device, the rocket would have covered up to 77.4 kilometres. That is the equivalent driving distance from Cape Town to Grabouw, with a few kilometres to spare!
Think about it. A projectile travelling at that speed on a collision course with the Moon... Surely the impact will have dire consequences? Like knocking the Moon off its orbit or creating a visual spectacle visible down here on Earth? The answer on both counts is ‘no’ – and here is why…
How the SpaceX Falcon 9 Went AWOL
Before we get into the whys and wherefores, here is a quick overview of the how. In other words, how did this situation arise in the first place? Why is a rocket spinning haphazardly around in lower Earth orbit without anyone in control?
What is interesting is this particular SpaceX Falcon Rocket has been swirling around with the rest of the space junk for more than seven years. Its job was to transport NASA’s Deep Space Climate Observatory (DSCOV) around 1.5 million kilometres into outer space.
That part of the mission went off without a hitch. It was during the return journey that things went pear-shaped. The rocket ran out of fuel and all contact with ground control was lost.
Instead of returning to Earth and burning up in the Earth’s atmosphere, as it normally would, the Falcon 9 became the Flying Dutchmen of the cosmos ... until the year of our lord 2022!
What are the Chances of Running Out of Rocket Fuel?
What are the chances of that happening? Well, we know there is a 77.6% probability that no Falcon 9 engines will fail on a flight. That means there was a 22.4% chance that things would go wrong – and it did. In the context of online gambling, that is virtually on a par with the 21.24% probability of getting a pair of jacks or better in online video poker!
We now know ‘why’ and ‘how’ the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket went rogue. We also know ‘when’ it is going to crash into the Moon. How about the ‘what’ – as in what the heck is going to happen?
What we can say for sure is that the Moon will continue orbiting around the Earth as it normally does. How can we be so certain? Well, it is not the first time a man-made spacecraft has smashed onto the lunar surface. There have been two previous incidents, one intentional and the other not so much.
Previous Incidents Between Rockets and the Moon
In 2009, NASA basically fired the upper stage of a spacecraft into the Cabeus crater at the lunar South Pole. The idea was to identify the substance in a darkened area of the crater. It too was travelling at around 2.5 kilometres per second when the collision occurred.
The second incident happened precisely ten years later. This time it was an equipment failure that caused the Beresheet lunar lander to crash on the Moon. According to the craft’s specifications, it weighed 600 kilograms and hit the surface at around 500 kilometres per hour. That is around 18.5 times slower than the estimated collision speed of the Falcon 9.
In both instances, the only damage incurred was an impact crater – one significantly larger than the other. As there are around 9 137 recognised craters on the Moon – with one more to come on March the 4th – the good old Aussie adage ‘no worries’ is the catchphrase of the day!
When the Falcon 9 rocket does come screeching to a halt on the lunar surface, the only recognisable damage will be a crater of approximately 19 metres in diameter. Will we be able to see anything from Earth? As the point of impact is calculated to be on the far side of the Moon, we will be none the wiser!
What that basically means is on March the 4th you can go about your usual business. If that means extending your online gambling sessions at Springbok Casino, we are behind you every step of the way! Either way, if you were holding your breath in anticipation of another catastrophic event, it is time to exhale.
What Would it Take to Knock the Moon off Its Orbit?
In two words… a lot. In fact, only a celestial object of the same size and density as the Moon would do. It would have to be around 3474.8 km in diameter and weigh 73.5 million metric tons. At this point in time, there simply isn’t any space debris or celestial body orbiting our solar system that comes close to those specs.
This mystery object would also have to be travelling in the opposite direction to the Moon, at a speed of 1.022 kilometres per second. If that happened, the impact would first stop the Moon… and then send it plunging towards Earth.
When you consider that Ceres – the largest asteroid in the universe – is roughly a quarter the size of the Moon, the chances of a Moon-Earth collision are virtually non-existent. In fact, you would have a far better chance of winning a progressive jackpot at Springbok Casino – the online gambling equivalent of the lottery!
Where to Get Your Online Gambling Fix?
Now that the world is not going to end any time soon, how about focussing on the finer things in life – like mini-vacations, sipping on a well-aged whiskey, and enjoying an online gambling session. At Springbok Casino, we offer hundreds of online casino games in all the popular categories.
When you join our top-ranked online gambling platform, you are eligible for a wide selection of bonuses and promotions. That includes our cashback bonus and free cash no deposit offer! Go on – sign up, login to Springbok Casino, and enjoy the best online gambling around!