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Chinese spy balloon over US

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Chinese spy balloon over US

Old 3rd Feb 2023, 16:29
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Originally Posted by langleybaston
Negloble over a 5 mile base line.
But that's not how far it is to the balloon which might be 50 miles away. Besides - kids gotta learn the Earth curves. In Montana they haven't see a ship disappear over the horizon.
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Old 3rd Feb 2023, 16:41
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Originally Posted by Ninthace
Why bother? Its presence is known and knocking it down gives an indication of high altitude defence capability.
Examine its on-board communications .
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Old 3rd Feb 2023, 16:42
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I wonder if it can be recovered with the instrument package relatively undamaged? If it starts to descend, Messrs Boyle, Archimedes and Newton would normally ensure a fairly hard bump on arrival.
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Old 3rd Feb 2023, 16:53
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Not that I think shooting it down is worth the candle.
Would a missile really be necessary? Wouldn’t a couple of short bursts of cannon-fire over a suitable area deflate the balloon(s) sufficiently to make it descend to earth? Seems a safer option.
Do they have an aircraft with a cannon capable of such a feat. Perhaps an F-18 or F-16 would suffice.

Last edited by albatross; 3rd Feb 2023 at 17:03.
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Old 3rd Feb 2023, 16:54
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Originally Posted by Ninthace
We used to!
I'm guessing that was for known satellite orbits, rather than for a balloon that no one saw coming.
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Old 3rd Feb 2023, 17:02
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Originally Posted by melmothtw
I'm guessing that was for known satellite orbits, rather than for a balloon that no one saw coming.
It been coming for several days...

Last edited by Ninthace; 3rd Feb 2023 at 17:43.
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Old 3rd Feb 2023, 17:13
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Boyle already ensured it would rise to that altitude and stay there. A slow leak would work, even by diffusion though the balloon envelope and Boyle might see to it that there was a slow return.

It could be from 12 to 24 miles up; If it's at the higher end of that range one will need a really good gun for a fighter to shoot it down. Then there's the rounds falling at random back onto Montana. The density may seem low, but it's sure one will hit the most valuable cow in a herd. Missiles are also a problem as the target one really wants is the balloon, which has not much radar or thermal signature. I checked and the air density at 120k ft is 0.002 that of sea level. Maybe that helps with the rounds from the fighter having less drag?
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Old 3rd Feb 2023, 17:22
  #48 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by ETOPS
Stand down - it's a weather balloon

Albeit flying some 60,000 feet above any weather. As it will be static w.r.t. the air mass that it is moving in, what's the point ?
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Old 3rd Feb 2023, 17:26
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Originally Posted by MechEngr
Boyle already ensured it would rise to that altitude and stay there. A slow leak would work, even by diffusion though the balloon envelope and Boyle might see to it that there was a slow return.

It could be from 12 to 24 miles up; If it's at the higher end of that range one will need a really good gun for a fighter to shoot it down. Then there's the rounds falling at random back onto Montana. The density may seem low, but it's sure one will hit the most valuable cow in a herd. Missiles are also a problem as the target one really wants is the balloon, which has not much radar or thermal signature. I checked and the air density at 120k ft is 0.002 that of sea level. Maybe that helps with the rounds from the fighter having less drag?
I beg to differ. As it loses buoyancy Archimedes loses the battle with Newton. As it descends increasing pressure, courtesy of Boyle, will compress the fixed mass of gas further decreasing the buoyancy and accelerating the descent and resulting in a fearsome bump. The only question is would the rising temperature at lower altitude bring Mr Charles to the rescue?
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Old 3rd Feb 2023, 17:47
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what's the point ?
Check rolling eye emoji....
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Old 3rd Feb 2023, 18:11
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Originally Posted by Ninthace
I beg to differ. As it loses buoyancy Archimedes loses the battle with Newton. As it descends increasing pressure, courtesy of Boyle, will compress the fixed mass of gas further decreasing the buoyancy and accelerating the descent and resulting in a fearsome bump. The only question is would the rising temperature at lower altitude bring Mr Charles to the rescue?
The pressure is increasing, but so is the density. Perhaps you are basing this on items submerged in water where the pressure of the water goes up but the water density doesn't. If this balloon was in the water that would be the case, but it started out at the ground level, with all the atmospheric pressure and went up from their.
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Old 3rd Feb 2023, 18:12
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Shoot
the
china
ballon
down
now

immediately expel ALL china diplomats from us

Last edited by Free Range; 3rd Feb 2023 at 20:07.
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Old 3rd Feb 2023, 18:58
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Whaaaat?!
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Old 3rd Feb 2023, 19:00
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That's an amusing proposal, Free Range.
Spoiler
 

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Old 3rd Feb 2023, 19:17
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Maybe these balloons will become a common sight -- probably Europe/UK next on the target list -- if that's possible.

Forget gunboat diplomacy -- balloons are cheaper.

Last edited by Chock Puller; 3rd Feb 2023 at 19:44. Reason: Politics belongs in Jet Blast.
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Old 3rd Feb 2023, 19:22
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Unless anyone knows better: there is nothing of consequence a balloon can see that a satellite cannot see, and the US forces can likely listen in to any radio transmissions from the balloon, gaining intelligence on Chinese encryption. Yes, it's cheeky of the Chinese, but if the balloon were a serious threat it would be shot down. I suspect US can gain more than it loses by observing it and listening to its transmissions. Anyone in a position to know for sure is unlikely to post answers here.
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Old 3rd Feb 2023, 19:37
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I don't think it anything to do with intelligence gathering just a way of putting a weed up the administration.

Its a cheap way way to get the worlds attention and difficult to counter without either looking weak or stupid (if the US failed in an attempt to shoot it down).





Last edited by Chock Puller; 3rd Feb 2023 at 19:41. Reason: Politics belongs in Jet Blast.
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Old 3rd Feb 2023, 20:01
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Originally Posted by 911slf
Unless anyone knows better: there is nothing of consequence a balloon can see that a satellite cannot see, and the US forces can likely listen in to any radio transmissions from the balloon, gaining intelligence on Chinese encryption. Yes, it's cheeky of the Chinese, but if the balloon were a serious threat it would be shot down. I suspect US can gain more than it loses by observing it and listening to its transmissions. Anyone in a position to know for sure is unlikely to post answers here.
The only advantages that I can think of is that it remains above the same area for long periods of time compared to a LEO reconnaissance satellite. Potentially, if you were interested in observing patterns of movement over relatively short periods of time (but at very high resolution) then it may have advantages. Slightly more far-fetched is the ability (compared to satellites) to conduct atmospheric sampling and to record sound. Both of these capabilities have been used in US balloon programmes in the past.

Either way, the USA has previously run a number of balloon based intelligence programmes (e.g. Genetrix) , some of which overflew China. Of course they are within their rights to shoot the thing down, but the outrage seems a little hard to justify given the history.
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Old 3rd Feb 2023, 20:16
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Origin?

Did it have "made in China" written on the side? Couldn't be from Russia or North Korea? Could it be that the respective government actually did not know?

Or something like the Bay of Pigs fiasco?

In the UK, I haven't seen or heard anything regarding how the "ownership" was determined?

Just asking. May have missed a news report ot two.
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Old 3rd Feb 2023, 20:20
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Originally Posted by 70 Mustang
Just asking. May have missed a news report ot two.
China have claimed that it is theirs and that it is civilian weather balloon.

https://edition.cnn.com/politics/liv...685112a0bbb60a
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