Chapter 941: The Spotted Asteroid
William James was shocked.
He didn’t even think the 20-second video he took, uploaded to YouTube, then posted to his Twitter would create an Internet storm
He wasn’t a social media influencer and no more than one hundred people on Twitter followed him. Most of them were his real friends with the rest of his following consisting of strangers. He didn’t expect that just two hours after uploading the video, the video would become viral and easily broke the 100,000 mark, rapidly moving towards the 500,000 views.
Happiness came too suddenly and too inexplicably.
William didn’t realize what was going on and just watched his Twitter followings skyrocketing.
Two hours ago, he saw a meteor outside the window of the space elevator.
That’s right, it was a meteor!
Meteors were formed after friction with the atmosphere of the asteroid. There was no air in the universe, and naturally, it was impossible to form a gorgeous, flaming tail. He was convinced he didn’t make a mistake, and that the bright spot had a flaming tail! In a dark universe, it was so bright and visible!
Unlike most civil airliners, when the altitude exceeded 100 kilometers, the space elevator could access the network through the quantum communication satellites of Celestial Trade and the network speed would still be quite fast.
Clicking on the video he uploaded, he opened the comment page, and after watching the 20-second video, the netizens left their own amazed comments.
“God! What did I see? There are meteors in outer space? Isn’t this a scene that is only visible in the atmosphere?”
“There’s nothing to see. I’m a professional pornography examiner. I have to watch thousands of videos every day. I can confidently say this video is photoshopped! There are too many unreasonable scenes; there are so many that I don’t know where to start.”
“To the comment above, you’re not a professional pornography examiner! I perform video verification for the courts. From a professional point of view, this video doesn’t have any synthetic components at all. In addition, photoshop is an image processing software. Read more books before you speak online.”
“The comment above is amazing!”
William looked at the line of comments on his phone.
He didn’t expect that the video he uploaded would create such heated discussions.
“The name of the video uploader’s Twitter is William James. I saw it on the official website of Celestial Trade. The name of this person is included on the list of foreign guests participating in the first train ceremony! This video should be real, but how can they access the internet on the space elevator?”
“Are you dumb? There’s internet connection in all areas covered by the quantum communication satellite. There’s free Wi-Fi in any place in Xin, yet you’re asking how can they access the internet?”
He was dumbfounded by this. Just as he was preparing to post something on his Twitter, the elevator crew made an announcement.
“This Ch-001 train is about to arrive. In the train deceleration phase, the carriage will experience upward gravity. To avoid accidents, please return to your seats and fasten your seat belt. The current speed is 2.1 kilometer per second. The deceleration time is…”
The angular velocity was constant, and as the altitude increased, the linear velocity of the elevator itself naturally increased. The macroscopic performance was that the farther away from Earth, the more obvious the sense of weightlessness in the elevator felt. When the elevator arrived at the synchronous orbit, the speed of the passengers and the elevator would also reach the synchronous orbit rotating speed, at which time the elevator would reach complete weightlessness.
At the end of deceleration, the passengers would follow the inertia upward, and the gravity parameter in the compartment would become a negative number. The ceiling and floor might be reversed. Therefore, the crew warmly reminded the passengers to return to their seats before entering the deceleration phase and fasten their seat belts.
William looked at his unedited Twitter post on his phone and sighed helplessly. He stuffed the phone back into his pocket and returned to his seat. He made up his mind that by the time he arrived to the final destination, Celestial City, he would reply to all the curious comments.
Jiang Chen also saw the video, although it was already a week after. The popularity of the video even challenged the large-scale documentary “Space Elevator Travel” launched by Celestial Trade and BBC!
Humans had a natural tendency to gossip.
Some people speculated that it was an alien spaceship, and some people speculated it was a burning asteroid, and even more weird netizens commented it was someone breaking the realm of the world.
However, Jiang Chen, who was lying in bed, read the true identity of the “unidentified flying object” at first glance. It was the Bennu asteroid captured by Celestial Trade?
A few days ago, the technical team led by Kelvin dragged it into the Earth and Moon system, and they were making the final minor adjustments to make the asteroiod as close as possible to Earth.
The closer to Earth it was, the lower the mining cost. But what Jiang Chen didn’t think about was that the rocket hanging in front of this asteroid could be seen so clearly from the synchronous orbit!
Jiang Chen’s sleepiness suddenly disappeared as he jerked up from bed, and changed to a more comfortable posture to lean on the pillows.
His fingers swiped over the holographic screen and entered keywords with his voice, them he began to concentrate on the related news.
In less than two minutes, he found what he was looking for.
As early as the second day the video was uploaded, the Capitol received a petition to investigate the “meteor in space”. In just five days, the number of signatures on the petition broke 100,000. According to regulations, once the number of signatures reached 100,000, the Capitol must respond.
The Capitol’s approach was also very simple. They tasked the duty to Bolden, who had just returned from Canberra, and they handed over the investigation to NASA. NASA also lived up to their expectations. After two days of investigation, NASA Director Bolden clarified the matter through the official website of the Capitol.
It had nothing to do with an extraterrestrial civilization like the Martians—it was an asteroid. It was an asteroid with quite a name. Its name was Bennu, and the scientific prediction was that it would collide with the Earth at the end of the 22nd century.
On the top of the asteroid was a “net” made out of special materials, which was connected by eight rocket engines in the front. The mystery was revealed, and the elongated light wasn’t the “tail” of the asteroid, but the flickering tail of rockets flying in front of the asteroid.
The mystery was revealed and the Bennu asteroid was pulled into the Earth and Moon system from its original orbit. And all this turned out to be artificial. It blew the minds of NASA’s experts and they also felt nervous for Mother Earth.
According to the data observed by NASA, Bennu rotated the Sun at a speed of 63,000 miles per hour, which was not slow compared to the Earth’s revolution. A collision with Earth would be equivalent to detonating three billion tons of explosives!
It was no match for the asteroid that made the dinosaurs extinct, but it was certainly a big thing for mankind.
Jiang Chen went onto the official website of the Capitol and glanced at the time when NASA published the report. The time was exactly five o’clock that afternoon. At that time, he had just signed a contract with the president of the Hilton Hotel, and the two went to a hotel owned by Hilton to have a meal.
“No wonder I didn’t receive any news at all. This is really a coincidence,” Jiang Chen muttered to himself while beginning to deliberate.
He didn’t file the plan to the United Nations to capture the small asteroid because in his view, there was absolutely no need for it. The fact was that if he actually did file it, he would be asking for trouble. Apart from causing unnecessary panic, there would be no benefit at all.
Now, this asteroid caught the attention of the UA, or rather, caught the attention of the whole world. Although there was no direct evidence that the eight rocket engines were masterpieces of Celestial Trade, which other company in the world could do something this outrageous?
It took everything SpaceX had to send a detector to the asteroid to take a rock sample.
Either the aliens made a joke with Earth or Celestial Trade was joking with all humans.
Thinking of this, Jiang Chen couldn’t help but pinch his brows.
What to do now?