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Debris from China’s rocket booster has fallen on Earth

Debris from China’s rocket booster has fallen on Earth

China’s first space station, Tiangong-1, also crashed into the Pacific Ocean in 2016

Debris from a rocket that propelled part of China’s new space station into orbit has fallen into the sea in the Philippines, according to the Chinese government. The majority of the final stage of the Long March-5B rocket has burned up after entering the atmosphere. The announcement said the “landing area” was at 119 degrees east longitude and 9.1 degrees north latitude. China faced criticism for allowing rocket stages to fall to Earth in an uncontrolled manner twice before. NASA also accused Beijing last year of “failing to meet responsible standards regarding their space debris” after parts of a Chinese rocket landed in the Indian Ocean.

The country’s first space station, Tiangong-1, also crashed into the Pacific Ocean in 2016 after Beijing confirmed it had lost control. An 18-tonne rocket fell in May 2020. China also faced criticism after using a missile to destroy one of its defunct weather satellites in 2007, thus creating a field of debris that other governments said might jeopardize other satellites. China has spent billions of dollars on space flight and exploration as it seeks to build a program that reflects its stature as a rising global power.


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