By: Kyle James | 04-02-2018 | News
Photo credit: Surf Fox News | YouTube

China's Tiangong-1 Space Station Makes An Easter Landing

If you've been worried about whether the derelict Chinese space station plummeting back to Earth would land on top of your head, you can put your mind at ease. China's Tiangong-1 space station has landed in the Pacific Ocean, according to the country's space agency. Well, it actually broke up in the atmosphere and the debris landed in the Pacific Ocean.

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">NW of Tahiti - it managed to miss the &#39;spacecraft graveyard&#39; which is further south! <a href=""></a></p>&mdash; Jonathan McDowell (@planet4589) <a href="">April 2, 2018</a></blockquote>

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The space station nearly landed in the "spacecraft graveyard" in the ocean where lots of space junk falls but actually ended up landing just north of it. The U.S. military appears to have also confirmed the space station's landing with a statement from Joint Force Space Component Command (JFSCC).

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">UPDATE: <a href=";ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#JFSCC</a> confirmed <a href=";ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Tiangong1</a> reentered the atmosphere over the southern Pacific Ocean at ~5:16 p.m. (PST) April 1. For details see <a href=""></a> <a href="">@US_Stratcom</a> <a href="">@usairforce</a> <a href="">@AFSpaceCC</a> <a href="">@30thSpaceWing</a> <a href="">@PeteAFB</a> <a href="">@SpaceTrackOrg</a> <a href=""></a></p>&mdash; 18 SPCS (@18SPCS) <a href="">April 2, 2018</a></blockquote>

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Tiangong-1 is a 10.4-meter long space station that was launched in 2011. Its name translates to "Heavenly Palace 1" and was first launched to carry out docking and orbit experiments for China's space program. The landing was predicted by the European Space Agency who said it was likely going to break up over water.

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The European Space Agency also said the probability of being struck by a piece of debris from the defunct station would be "10 million times smaller than the yearly chance of being hit by lighting." Tiangong-1's mission was repeatedly extended long after its original decommission date in 2013.

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China told the UN in December 2017 that the space station would come down by late March 2018. A Chinese tabloid called the Global Times said the hype around the falling station was due to "envy" of China's space agency. "It’s normal for spacecraft to re-enter the atmosphere, yet Tiangong-1 received so much attention partly because some western countries are trying to hype and sling mud at China’s fast-growing aerospace industry," the Global Times wrote.

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Twitter: #Easter #China #SpaceStation #Tiangong1 #SpaceJunk #ISS

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1 Comment/s
Anonymous No. 22088 2018-04-02 : 10:57

"10 million times SMALLER than the yearly chance of being hit by lighting."

Is it me an my limited English?

doesn't 10x smaller odds actually mean 10x more likely?

eg. if my odds of being struck by lightening are 1 in 700,000

then if the odds were 10x smaller wouldn't it mean 1 in 70,000 ?

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