February 1, 2023
View of Tiangong 3 – Chinese space station orbiting the planet Earth. 3D Illustration Alejo Miranda / Shutterstock.com Generally when we worry about things falling on us, it tends to be bird poop. You can now add “rocket boosters hurtling to Earth” to that list, though the odds are still low on space debris hitting…

View of Tiangong 3 – Chinese space station orbiting the planet Earth. 3D Illustration Alejo Miranda / Shutterstock.com

Generally when we worry about things falling on us, it tends to be bird poop. You can now add “rocket boosters hurtling to Earth” to that list, though the odds are still low on space debris hitting you.

The charred remnants of a Long March 5B rocket booster, launched earlier by China, recently plunged uncontrollably back to Earth and into the south-central region of the Pacific Ocean. No people appear to have been killed, but some fish were probably alarmed.

“Once again, the People’s Republic of China is taking unnecessary risks with the uncontrolled rocket stage reentry of their Long March 5B rocket stage. They did not share specific trajectory information which is needed to predict landing zones and reduce risk,” said NASA Administrator Bill Nelson in a statement.

The rocket originally carried another piece of China’s Tiangong space station to orbit, the country’s answer to the International Space Station. In an amusing but maybe not quite amusing way, this is the second time this year uncontrolled remnants of the Long March 5B came crashing down,…

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