In plummeting news, an ESA satellite which has been spying on the Earth’s gravity is coming to an untimely end.
The Go Observe (Covertly) the Earth, or GOCE, satellite was launched in 2009 to confirm the existence of gravity, a theoretical force first proposed by Isaac Newton in 1666 when an apple hit him on the head, causing a mild concussion. (Disclaimer: the story is widely known, but today Isaac Newton is considered to be apocryphal.)
The GOCE project has had a number of difficulties. Its mission was to deploy 100 space apples in an attempt to confirm Newton’s theory, but the apples just kind of floated there. Gravity supporters claim that the experiment results were skewed by anti-gravity bias from the mission personnel.
Scandal erupted last year when pictures of the Earth’s geoid were posted on the internet, causing the earth much embarrassment. GOCE program manager Christoph Steiger called the results “fantastic” and “accurate”, until the picture (shown above) turned out to be a papier-mâché globe constructed by Miranda Johnson in Mrs. Marino’s second grade art class.
Ironically, the depressed satellite’s suicidal attempt to throw itself to the earth may do more to validate the gravity theory than any of the experiments.
ESA debriologist Holger Krag, who requested anonymity because his name was an anagram of “Hark Logger”, indicated that parts of GOCE would survive re-entry including a tank and magentotorquers. He later confessed that it would be stupid to send a tank into space, and he made up the word “magnetotorquer” just to see if anyone was still listening.
The ESA insisted on describing the GOCE project as “successful”, despite running out of fuel and plummeting to its death. Christoph Steiger (whose first “er” was deemed non-essential during the government shutdown) mostly talked about his own emotions rather than any actual achievements. “Personally, I do feel sorry to see GOCE come to an end, a project on which I have spent seven intense years. Then again, it is also a good feeling to know that we have really gotten the most out of this mission before its natural end.” Asked to itemize any conclusions drawn from the data, Steiger rushed off to another meeting.
The final moments of GOCE’s life will be witnessed by members of the Inter-Agency Space Debris Coordination Committee (IADC). When asked why there was no “S” and only one “C” in the organization’s acronym, committee chairman Steven Trevor indicated that the two letters had been deemed non-essential during the government shutdown.
The IADC has been the center of controversy for years. Conspiracy theorists claim that the IADC is the same organization as the one that Wonder Woman used as a cover in the 1970s. IADC Agent Diana Prince (seen below searching for space debris in a ponytail that clearly indicates she is not Wonder Woman), dismissed the allegations.
Rumors that the IADC would be deploying Wonder Woman (seen below searching for space debris in a tiara and bracelets that clearly indicate she is not Diana Prince) and her invisible plane to witness the fall of GOCE were not confirmed.
(Click on the papier-mâché globe to read the original story.)