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Out of control Chinese rocket has crash landed back on Earth
Featured Image Credit: Xinhua / Alamy Stock Photo

Out of control Chinese rocket has crash landed back on Earth

An out of control Chinese rocket has crash landed back onto Earth, however, its original crash site location was unclear.

An out of control rocket that was originally launched from China has crashed landed back on Earth.

China's Long March-5B rocket re-entered Earth's atmosphere on Friday (4 November) after being launched on Monday (31 October) to carry the final module to the country's Tiagong space station, which is now complete.

The first module for the station was launched in April this year, with the second following in July.

As reported by News Scientist, the new outpost is around a quarter of the size of the International Space Station (ISS).

At the time, space analyst Laura Forczyk, said: "China, in a sense, is trying to catch up with capabilities that other space powers that have already done.

"One of the things that helps China here is that their government is not democratic, so there isn’t the infighting that we have in the US about what the priorities are and how to fund them."

When the rocket's booster entered earth's atmosphere again on Friday (4 November), it was unclear where it had crashed landed.

The 16 metre long booster, which also weighs a staggering 22,000 tonnes, has spent the past week drifting back towards Earth.

The first module for the space station was launched back in April.
Xinhua / Alamy Stock Photo

With a rapid speed of 30,000 kilometres per hour, the exact time of re-entry impacts where the rocket will land - and just a few seconds difference will impact the crash site by tens of kilometres.

Prior to confirmation of where it had landed, a Chinese foreign ministry played down concerns the crash would cause harm to activation activities or people on the ground.

Speaking to the New York Times, they said: "China has always carried out activities in the peaceful use of outer space in accordance with international law and international practice – re-entry of the last stage of a rocket is an international practice."

The US Space Command also tweeted before the discovery was found, they wrote: "#USSPACECOM can confirm the People’s Republic of China Long March 5B #CZ5B rocket re-entered the atmosphere over the south-central Pacific Ocean at 4:01am MDT/10:01 UTC on 11/4. For details on the uncontrolled re-entry's impact location, we once again refer you to the #PRC."

The third and final module (pictured) launched on Monday (31 October)
The third and final module (pictured) launched on Monday (31 October)

And the department confirmed the two pieces of the rocket had re-entered Earth over the Pacific Ocean.

In a follow-up tweet, they said: "#USSPACECOM can confirm a second atmospheric re-entry correlated with the #PRC’s Long March 5B #CZ5B as it exited the #USSPACECOM Area of Responsibility over the Northeast Pacific Ocean region at 4:06am MDT/10:06 UTC on Nov. 4."

The exact locations of the impact have not been reported by the People's Republic of China as of yet.

Topics: Space, China