Status Report

EUVE Spacecraft Re-enters Earth’s Atmosphere

By SpaceRef Editor
January 31, 2002
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NASA’s Extreme Ultraviolet Explorer (EUVE) re-entered
the Earth’s atmosphere at approximately 11:15 p.m. EST
Wednesday. According to calculations made by the United
States Space Command Space Control Center, EUVE re-entered
the atmosphere over central Egypt.

“The actual location of EUVE’s re-entry was within the
predicted orbit track,” said Scott Hull, spacecraft
engineering lead for space science mission operations, at
NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Md. “We expected
EUVE could come in at a number of points along the ground

EUVE did not have an on-board propulsion system to allow
engineers to control the spacecraft’s re-entry. Using U.S.
Space Command data, engineers calculated EUVE’s orbit track
and predicted where it could re-enter the atmosphere. EUVE
was in a 28.5-degree orbit and could re-enter in any location
within this orbit range. This range included areas as far
north as Orlando, Fla., and as far south as Brisbane,

The object was not designed to survive re-entry intact and
was expected to break apart and mostly burn up in the
atmosphere. U.S. Space Command cannot confirm if any pieces
survived re-entry.

EUVE was launched on July 7, 1992. Science operations ended
in December 2000. During its eight years in orbit, EUVE was
the first astrophysics mission to explore the extreme
ultraviolet-and helped to bridge the gap in our understanding
of this previously unknown spectrum. EUVE observed more than
1,000 nearby sources, including more than three dozen objects
outside our galaxy.

Additional background information about EUVE is available at

SpaceRef staff editor.