Artificial meteor shower to light up the sky… for science (and, yep, entertainment)

Japanese space tech company ALE has scheduled the world's first artificial meteor shower for 2025. The Sky Canvas uses small orbiting satellites to release "shooting stars"—tiny metal particles about the size of a grain of rice—that will fall to Earth and burn up in the atmosphere. While ALE promises "entertainment at an unprecedented scale," Yahoo! Finance reports that the project will also "collect atmospheric data in the mesosphere, the third layer of the atmosphere which is too low to be observed by satellites and too high for weather balloons or aircraft." From Yahoo! Finance:

It is hoped that studying the path and light emission of these shooting stars will enable ALE to collect data – such as wind speed, and atmospheric composition – which can then help scientists and researchers develop new weather models.

Dr Lena Okajima, founder and chief executive of ALE, said: "Our aim is to contribute to the sustainable development of humankind and to bring space closer to all of us, by expanding the area of human activity beyond Earth to discover, collect and apply essential data from space.

"As a first step, I founded ALE to create the world's first human-made shooting star, to inspire wonder and to spark scientific curiosity.

image: ALE