Chinese space station to crash to Earth within weeks

  • Chinese space station to crash to Earth within weeks

Chinese space station to crash to Earth within weeks

According to an astrophysicist from Harvard University, Jonathan McDowell, Tiangong-1 is falling by about 6km a week, faster than its recorded speed at 1.5km in October. As the agency is not able to control it, for now, it is hard to say where the massive space station will crash.

When will Tiangong-1 crash on Earth?

According to the latest information from the European Space Agency, which is tracking the object's movement, the space station is now expected to come tumbling down somewhere between March 24th and April 19th.

In 2016, China admitted that it had lost control of Tiangong-1 and would be unable to perform a controlled re-entry in the atmosphere. "At no time will a precise time/location prediction from ESA be possible". This means it will land around the northern United States, Spain, Portugal, Greece, China, the Middle East, and other countries.

The US-funded organization that advises private and government enterprises on space flight also noted that any debris surviving the crash into Earth's atmosphere would "fall within a region that is a few hundred kilometers in size". Unlike Tiangong-1, debris from NASA's Skylab was judged to be relatively likely to hit someone when it made its re-entry in 1979. A highly toxic and corrosive substance called hydrazine could survive reentry.

A statement from Aerospace Corp said: "When considering the worst-case locations, the probability that a specific person will be struck by Tiangong-1 debris is about one million times smaller than the odds of winning the Powerball jackpot".

"The weight was comparable to an empty soda can", Lottie Williams told in 2011 while describing the incident. Williams was sure she'd found a piece of a shooting star. "Yes there's a chance it will do damage, it might take out someone's auto, there will be a rain of a few pieces of metal, it might go through someone's roof, like if a flap fell off a plane, but it is not widespread damage". "But we will only know where they are going to land after the fact".

The Long March II-F rocket loaded with China's unmanned space module Tiangong-1 lifts off from the launch pad in the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center, Gansu province September 29, 2011. Liu Yang was the first Chinese female astronaut who visited there in 2012. While the space lab was expected to end its operation in 2013, the Chinese space agency made a decision to extend its lifespan for a few more years.

The Aerospace Corporation, a California-based non-profit research and development organization, predicted the 8.5-ton space station will collide into the earth's atmosphere in the first week of April, with the error of margin at a week on either side. In 1991, the 20-tonne Salyut 7 space station of Soviet Union bragged into the Earth docked to Cosmos 1686.