Science & Technology

Space watchers on alert for uncontrolled reentry of Chinese craft

Madrid, Jul 29 (EFE).- Space monitoring agencies around the world are on alert for yet another Chinese rocket module that is expected to make an uncontrolled return to Earth at some point this weekend.

The roughly 20-ton Long March 5B rocket booster is due to re-enter the Earth’s atmosphere between 8.53pm CEST on Saturday and 12.53pm on Sunday at a speed of 28,000 kilometers per hour, although calculations will become more accurate the closer it looms.

Experts monitoring the crashdown believe it could hit the Earth between the 41st parallels, most likely in the ocean.

The chances of it landing on solid ground are low, Jorge Lomba, a department chief at Spain’s CDTI space center, told Efe.

The tumbling rocket could, however, present a risk to air traffic.

The Chinese rocket was launched on July 24 to transport a module to the country’s space orbital platform, and is currently orbiting the Earth.

It’s not the first time the international space monitoring community has had to track an uncontrolled Chinese craft. In May last year, another Long March 5B rocket crashed back to Earth, although it almost completely disintegrated and landed in the Indian Ocean.

In 2018, the Tiangong 1 orbital laboratory, which had been out of use for two years, tumbled into the Pacific Ocean. EFE


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