China launched the first module of the new space station, which the country has been building for years. The country is hoping that the new permanent space station would be operational by 2022. China recently launched the Tianhe module on a Long March-5B rocket from the Wenchang Space Launch Center. However, the rocket body is now out of control and could fall back to the earth.
The Long March-5B rocket is currently circulating the planet uncontrollably after failing to fall on the pre-designated spot, in the ocean. Andrew Jones, who has been covering the Chinese space program, reports that the rocket body might fall on the earth in the next few days. Experts believe that it is not a good idea to let the 21-ton rocket body enter the atmosphere uncontrolled.
There hasn’t been any recorded incident where more than 10 ton object fall into the earth uncontrolled. This is the first time since 1990 that a body has been deliberately left to fall into the earth’s atmosphere. After the body falls back to the earth, the majority part of the body will potentially burn in the atmosphere. However, there are higher chances that significant chunks of debris fall on the earth surface.
China already had experienced out-of-control rocket falling
When it comes to space exploration, China has always been slightly left behind and unsuccessful as compared to the US and Russia. In May 2020, China launched the Long March 5b to the orbit. However, after six days, the rocket’s core fell back to the earth uncontrolled. The reports claimed that the rocket entered the earth over the Atlantic Ocean. Some parts of the rocket also fell on Côte d’Ivoire.
Since the vast surface of the planet contain an ocean body, the chunks of Long March-5B might fall on the ocean. However, this uncontrolled reentry could still threaten the inhabited areas in some part of the world. The latest module, which was launched on April 29, 2021, measured 100 feet long and 16 feet wide. SpaceX’s Falcon 9 also had reentry on the earth few weeks ago that garnered huge press attention.
The Falcon 9 reportedly reentered the earth’s gravity over Seattle and crash-landed in Washington state. A pressure tank crashed on the ground in the state that left around 4-inch dent in the ground.