Rocket debris racing for Earth, expected to arrive tomorrow
Debris falling from a Chinese rocket is expected to land on Earth tomorrow, amid concerns it could cause damage upon re-entry into the atmosphere.
A Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin urged today that most of the debris will be burned up on re-entry and is highly unlikely to cause any harm.
The Defence Department said US Space Command was monitoring the rocket’s movements, with re-entry expected to be around 8 May.
Falling from the Long March 5B, that sent part of a planned space station into orbit last week, the debris will likely make a splash in international waters, China’s Global Times reported on Wednesday.
The Long March 5B rocketed into space from Hainan island on 29 April, carrying the “Tianhe” module, which will eventually become living quarters for three crew members onboard a permanent Chinese space station.
Points of re-entry remain unclear, however, Chinese tabloid Global Times, described reports of an “out of control” rocket that could cause damage as “Western hype.”
“Most of the debris will burn up during re-entry…leaving only a very small portion that may fall to the ground, which will potentially land on areas away from human activities or in the ocean,” chief editor of Aerospace Knowledge magazine, Wang Yanan, was quoted to say by the tabloid.
However, the Pentagon urged that “all debris can be potential threats to spaceflight safety and the space domain.”