NASA astronauts accidentally drop toolbox, experts say it can be spotted with binoculars as it orbits Earth

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Forget meteors and the Northern Lights.

For sky watchers, the real spectacle is a toolbox lost in space.

The satchel-sized bag was dropped by astronauts earlier this month while performing external maintenance work on the International Space Station.

It floated away before they noticed and is now orbiting the Earth a few minutes ahead of the ISS, traveling at about 17,000 miles per hour.

Despite the fact that the pocket is located 320 kilometers above the Earth’s surface, experts believe that it should be possible to see it through binoculars or a telescope because its white surface strongly reflects the sun’s rays.

The tool bag was used by NASA’s Jasmin Moghbeli and Loral O’Hara during a rare all-female spacewalk to repair a solar panel.

His position was confirmed by their Japanese colleague Satoshi Furukawa, who realized he had accidentally photographed it while taking a photo of Mount Fuji as the ISS passed over his homeland.

NASA controllers have calculated that the toolbox poses no risk to the station and expect it to burn up in the coming months as it falls into Earth’s atmosphere.

It has been classified as space junk and has been given an ID number.

Ms Moghbeli told mission control after the bag was spotted: ‘In the most unlikely event, Satoshi was actually… taking pictures of Mount Fuji and also took a nice photo of a lost item, yesterday’s nice crew lock bag. He wanted to see Mount Fuji, I think.”

The astronauts planned to remove a communications device called the radio frequency group, but were running out of time for their six-hour spacewalk.

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