I have a hypothetical question which is prima fascia more than a little ridiculous, but it relates to a science fiction book I'm working on writing. I'm hoping that one or more of the aviation experts here can weigh in on it and give me some realistic answers about a very unrealistic scenario.
Imagine for a moment that somebody has a technology to launch an object a bit larger and heavier than a railroad locomotive into space at hypersonic speeds. This technology doesn't generate a great deal of heat on its own: the only heat generated would be from the friction of the air at those speeds, and the technology is inherently capable of protecting the object from that phenomenon. There would be a hypersonic boom, and technology generates a moderate amount of light in addition to that which the air's friction generates. It makes no effort to hide itself from radar returns.
If this technology was used to launch such an object into space in a northern part of Canada where there is no civilian ATC radar operating, who would notice it? What existing detection systems might they use? Who might investigate, and how?
Thanks in advance to anybody who cares to give me any of their thoughts.
1) Your Hypersonic launcher is it from the ground?..... If so, It would generate a lot of sound and any sound detector (a way to detect a stealth aircraft) would detect the sonic boom no matter how attenuated. This would be the Russians.
2) Any number of satillites with doppler radar or simple IR detectors would pick up the speeding "hot object". Get away with this once.
3) An air launch over the ocean preferably the south Pacific, would be less detectable from ground based sensors, but those "eye in the sky" would be hard to hide from.
4) A high altitude airlaunch at speed could be mistaken for a reentering satillite, if it was timed for such a reentry. A possible plot line? deorbit a satillite on the course of the launching.