Picturing Phobos-Grunt’s Sad Final Days

Looking more like a religious icon than a once-ambitious interplanetary probe, Phobos-Grunt is getting renewed attention as it approaches its upcoming crash.

German researchers captured this fiery image of the ill-fated Russian Mars probe, Phobos-Grunt. It doesn’t actually look like this. Yet.

The radar image was captured by theĀ Fraunhofer Institute for High Frequency Physics and Radar Techniques. No word on why the scientists decided that campfire-orange was the best tint to give the digital image.

Regardless, Phobos will indeed be that color in three to five days, when it re-enters Earth’s atmosphere. Paranoia surrounding the failed mission goes beyond worries about being hit on the head by flaming debris. Some think Phobos was attacked by U.S. energy beams.

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