Beijing, May 9 (EFE).- Debris from the Chinese longest rocket launched last week plunged back into Earth’s atmosphere Sunday with most parts burnt off during the process, China Manned Space Agency (CMSA) said.
The agency said the remnants of the Long March-5B Y2 carrier rocket reentered the atmosphere at 10.24 am.
“The vast majority of the device burned up during the re-entry, and the landing area of the debris is around a sea area with the center at 2.65 degrees north latitude and 72.47 degrees east longitude,” said the agency.
The coordinates are around the Maldives islands in the Indian Ocean, south of India.
The debris had an estimated mass of between 17 and 21 tons and a measured approximately 30 meters.
It moved with an estimated speed of 28,000 km per hour.
Various space surveillance services, including the Pentagon or the European Union Space Surveillance and Tracking Service (EUSST), were on alert ahead of the debris landing.
The agency had warned on Friday that the rocket debris would fall in an oceanic region or uninhabited areas as the probability of an impact on the ground in populated areas was low.
China also asserted on Friday that it was “highly unlikely” that the remains of the rocket caused damage on its return to Earth as the remnants would disintegrate during re-entry into the atmosphere.
The rocket sent the first section of China’s future space station Tianhe core module into orbit on Apr.29,
US experts criticized the Chinese space program for allowing the uncontrolled re-entry of such a huge rocket. EFE