On Saturday night, the International Astronomical Center released a video documenting the moment debris from a Chinese missile landed in Malaysia, ending up in the “Sulu Sea.”
declared US Space Command Debris from the massive Chinese missile entered Earth’s atmosphere over the Indian Ocean at 12:45pm EST.
For its part, the Chinese Space Agency announced in a post on its communications site:WeiboMost of the wreckage burned and fell into the Sulu Sea, which stretches between the island of Borneo and the Philippines.
Debris is expected to land in the eastern Indian Ocean near Indonesia at 16:49 GMT today, July 30, 2022, minus 10 minutes, the center said. That is, about a quarter of an hour later.
“China has not shared any information regarding the trajectory of the Long March 5B rocket back to Earth,” NASA chief Bill Nelson said.
Nelson noted, il A statement on the agency’s websiteSuch practices pose a threat to human life and property.
A few days ago, the US Space Command revealed that it is tracking the remains of the 23-ton Chinese “Long March 5B” rocket that carried the Chinese space lab’s “Wendian” unit into space on Sunday, July 24. Out of control and to Earth.
After the successful completion of its mission, the missile descended uncontrollably into Earth’s atmosphere, “where it is unclear where it will fall,” CNN reported, citing the US Space Command.
A spokesman said the US command said it was tracking a Chinese missile that had hit the ground.
The spokesman said that based on changing weather conditions, the missile’s entry point into the Earth’s atmosphere “can only be determined hours before it enters,” but it is estimated to enter the Earth’s atmosphere on August 1.
He disclosed that the 18th Space Defense Force, which is part of the US military, is monitoring the entry operations and will provide daily updates on its location.
The erratic landing marks the third instance of Chinese missiles failing to make a smooth landing, according to Michael Byers, a professor at Columbia University who wrote a recent study on the risk of casualties from space debris. Evidence of the validity of allegations against Beijing of “mishandling space debris”.
Byers explained that space debris poses very little danger to humans, but larger pieces can cause damage if they land in populated areas.
With the increase in space debris, these small opportunities are becoming more common, especially in the Global South, where the probability of landing rocket objects has almost tripled, according to research published in the journal Nature Astronomy.
In an interview with “CNN,” he said, “This risk can be completely avoided because the technologies that exist now provide for uncontrolled re-entry processes (usually in remote areas of the ocean).”
Jonathan McDowell, an astronomer at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, said that because there is no active control system and no engine to bring it back to Earth, the rocket is expected to spin in its orbit and eventually burn up. Due to friction with the atmosphere.
Last year, China came under fire for its handling of space debris when another unit launched a similar rocket and its remains sank in the Indian Ocean near the Maldives 10 days after launch.
“China has failed to meet internationally accepted standards in this area,” NASA said.
“We must reduce risks to people and property on Earth from reentry of space objects and increase transparency regarding these operations,” NASA Administrator Bill Nelson said at the time.
China responded to the criticism by accusing the US of “fantasizing” about the missiles’ re-entry and accusing US scientists and NASA of “working against it”.
In 2020, a nearly 20-ton Chinese rocket core will re-enter Earth’s atmosphere without control, diving directly into the Atlantic Ocean, passing through Los Angeles and New York City’s Central Park.
Space debris such as old satellites occasionally enter Earth’s atmosphere, although most burn up before hitting Earth and go unnoticed.
But large space debris, such as spacecraft and missile parts, pose a “minor” risk to humans and infrastructure on Earth.