China’s massive space junk will soon fall uncontrollably to Earth

Experts predict that China's latest massive space junk will fall to earth again in an uncontrolled manner at the end of this month (mid-August).

BingMag.com China’s massive space junk will soon fall uncontrollably to Earth

Experts predict that China's latest massive space junk will fall to earth again in an uncontrolled manner at the end of this month (mid-August).

The object in question is the main stage of the powerful Long March 5B rocket, which weighs about 25 tons, and launched it from Tiangong, the space station under construction in China, on Sunday, July 24. Space launched a Chinese-built spacecraft into space.

According to researchers at the Aerospace Corporation's Center for Reorbital and Space Debris Studies (CORDS), the rocket body will likely stay in the sky for about a week. Analyzing tracking data collected by the US Space Force's Space Surveillance Network, they predict that the missile body will hit the ground around 3:30 a.m. ET (11:30 a.m. ET) on July 31, with an estimation error of 22 hours. It will re-enter the Earth's atmosphere.

The CORDS researchers, however, emphasized that it is still too early to predict where the Chinese missile will land, and that the prediction will be updated over time. However, based on its orbit, we now know that re-entry will occur somewhere between 41 degrees north latitude and 41 degrees south latitude, and the entire rocket will not burn up in the atmosphere.

According to the aerospace company, "the rule "Generally, 20-40% of the mass of a large object reaches the Earth, but the exact number depends on the design of the object, in this case, we expect it to be about 5.5-9.9 tons."

In addition, In previous years, Tiangong 1, which was the prototype of China's space laboratory and helped to increase the knowledge of its construction, fell to the ground over the Pacific Ocean.

No injuries were reported in any of these incidents. Is. But the possibility of damage to infrastructure on Earth has led space exploration experts to blame China for allowing such uncontrolled falls. Tianhe wrote: "Countries should minimize the risks of re-entry of space objects to people and property on Earth and maximize transparency about these operations." It has failed responsibly with its space debris. It is very important that China and all space countries and commercial entities act responsibly and transparently in space to ensure the safety, stability, security and long-term sustainability of space activities." It will consist of three modules. China is expected to launch the third and final module aboard a Long March 5B this fall.

Cover photo: Long March rocket launch

Credit: CNSA

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