Home https://server7.kproxy.com/servlet/redirect.srv/sruj/smyrwpoii/p2/ Science https://server7.kproxy.com/servlet/redirect.srv/sruj/smyrwpoii/p2/ Massive Chinese rocket accidentally takes off in low orbit, may soon crash to Earth

Massive Chinese rocket accidentally takes off in low orbit, may soon crash to Earth

The launch of the Chinese Long March 5B rocket last week was largely successful.

The module is about to form the first of 11 parts of the Chinese space station “Tianhe” or “Heavenly Harmony” – but the booster and tanks that fired the rocket are not where they should be.

The boosters were supposed to fall to the ground in a planned area above the ocean, but inadvertently flew into Earth orbit.

What goes up must go down, which means that the giant “ground stage” (a term for the “backbone” of a missile, including tanks and pushers) – 98 feet long and 16 feet wide – is now out of control. and ready to make an uncontrolled re-entry somewhere on Earth every day, reports SpaceNews.

The event will mark one of the largest man-made objects for the uncontrolled re-entry into the history of space travel.

It is not yet known why the launch vehicle did not land over the ocean earlier than planned, but a similar mistake occurred with a Chinese rocket last year. It is reported that this launch vehicle finally landed in the Atlantic Ocean and West Africa, and the wreckage probably caused damage to villages in Côte d’Ivoire. No casualties were reported.

The main stage, which includes four side amplifiers, has a mass of about 21 tons.

Space flight observer Jonathan McDowell told SpaceNews that this was the fourth largest incident of unplanned re-entry of equipment.

“The main stage of the Long March 5B is seven times more massive than the second stage of the Falcon 9, which garnered a lot of press attention a few weeks ago when it returned to Seattle and dumped several pressure tanks in Washington state,” McDowell told the paper. . .

“I think by current standards it is unacceptable to let him enter again uncontrolled. “Since 1990, nothing over 10 tons has been deliberately left in orbit to enter uncontrolled,” he added.

The giant main stage, comparable in height to a 10-story building, can partially burn on re-entry, and it is very likely that debris from the booster will fall into the ocean or onto uninhabited areas. This leaves a small but real chance for falling debris to endanger human lives and property.

The tanks and pushers are currently orbiting the Earth at speeds in excess of 4.4 miles per second and are being monitored by US military radar, SpaceNews reports. The debris flashes periodically, suggesting it overturns and is out of control. Surviving objects will fall vertically after a delay and will move at a terminal speed, according to the publication.

The largest and most famous such incident occurred in 1979 during the re-entry of NASA’s 76-ton Skylab, which scattered debris across the Indian Ocean and Western Australia.

The orbital tilt of the Long March amplifier from 5.5 degrees to 41.5 degrees means that the rocket’s hull passes a little north of New York and all the way south to New Zealand, so its re-entry can happen anywhere. around the world between these latitudes.

However, the new re-entry could make a spectacular view, as with the recent re-entry of the second stage of SpaceX’s Falcon 9, which was supposed to burn over the Pacific Ocean, but made an uncontrolled re-entry over the Pacific Northwest. This incident led to a spectacular light show and released a pressure tank into the farmer’s field, fortunately without casualties.

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