China space station may fall to Earth within days

China space station may fall to Earth within days

China space station may fall to Earth within days

But the Inter-Agency Space Debris Coordination Committee calculates the odds of a person being hit by whatever is not burned up during re-entry to be 10 million times less than the chance of a person being hit by lightning.

However, given China's confidential way of doing things, it has not released every detail about the Tiangong-1's design and hence the experts were not sure how much percentage of the station would survive the re-entry in the atmosphere. Tiangong-1 is the 50th largest spacecraft.

But there are concerns the bus-sized spacecraft is out of control. In 2016, China announced it had lost contact with Tiangong-1 and could therefore no longer control its direction, making predicting where it will end up hard.

The state of Oklahoma lies in the path of possible re-entry for a falling Chinese space station.

The China Manned Space Engineering Office said it expects the lab to reenter the atmosphere between March 31 and April 4, burning up in the process.

The US Aerospace Corporation predicted any debris would fall within an area of a few hundred square kilometres.

China's out-of-control space station will crash into Earth over Easter weekend according to the European Space Agency

It's hard to calculate where parts of the spacecraft could crash into Earth, experts say. But given the spacecraft's inclination, it will re-enter somewhere between 43 degrees north and 43 degrees south latitudes. Back in 1979, NASA tried to crash the approximately 81-ton (73 metric tons) Skylab space stationinto the ocean but missed wildly, with much of the debris winding up outside Perth, Australia.

What makes this effect even more unpredictable is that Earth's atmosphere is very sensitive to solar activity, adds Ailor. Mr Aboutanios said if that happens during night time over a populated area it "will most certainly be visible, like a meteor or a shooting star". "For your safety, do not touch any debris you may find on the ground nor inhale vapors it may emit".

China had planned a controlled re-entry of Tiangong-1 into Earth's atmosphere.

Tiangong-1 was put into orbit on September 29, 2011 as a stepping stone towards the launch of China's first full-size space station, which is expected to be completed in the early 2020s.

"In the history of spaceflight, no casualties due to falling space debris have ever been confirmed", the agency said in a recent blog post. Its 9.3-ton bulk is just 7 percent the size of the 132.3-ton (120 metric tons) Russian space station Mir, which, according to ESA, became the largest object built by humans to fall out of space back in 2001.

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