Tiangong-1 to re-enter Earth's atmosphere on April 2

Tiangong-1 reentry updates | Rocket Science - ESA's blogs

Tiangong-1 SHOCK: New image emerges of space station poised to HIT Earth THIS WEEKEND

Experts have put the chances of being hit at much less than one in a trillion.

A model of the Tiangong-1 space lab module (left), the Shenzhou-9 manned spacecraft and three Chinese astronauts is displayed during a news conference at Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center, in Gansu province, China June 15, 2012.

In this September 29, 2011, file photo, a Long March-2FT1 carrier rocket loaded with China's Tiangong-1 space station blasts off from the launch pad at the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in northwest China's Gansu Province.

Brad Tucker, an astrophysicist at Australian National University, said Tiangong 1's re-entry was "mostly successful" and that it would have been better if the space station had not been spinning toward Earth.

Launched in 2011, Tiangong 1 was China's first space station, serving as an experimental platform for bigger projects such as the Tiangong 2 launched in September 2016 and a future permanent Chinese space station.

There is "no need for people to worry", the China Manned Space Engineering Office said earlier on its WeChat social media account.

An abandoned Chinese space laboratory is set to meet a fiery end within hours as it re-enters Earth's atmosphere, hitting a speed of around 26,000 kilometres an hour before disintegrating. Now, it's losing altitude quickly in its last few orbits around the Earth.

Because two-thirds of Earth is covered by oceans and vast land areas are thinly populated, The Aerospace Corporation reasoned that danger to life or property is very low, and any surviving reentry debris will most likely fall into an ocean.

It will take a lot of luck to catch a glimpse of the Heavenly Palace's final moments.

"Calmer space weather around Earth and its atmosphere is now expected in the coming days".

"This means that the density of the upper atmosphere, through which Tiangong-1 is moving, did not increase as predicted".

"If it hits on its smooth side, sort of like a rock skipping on a lake, it'll bounce", he said. But even the latest predictions could end up being off due to unusual behavior by the atmosphere, Jonathan McDowell, an astronomer at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, said on Twitter. It has been falling more than a mile every day since then, and its rate of descent is also accelerating. Space.com reports that Aerospace Corp., which is tracking the orbital fall of the space station, has estimated the crash to occur between March 31 and April, with an emphasis on 10:00 a.m. EST.

The US military confirmed the re-entry with a statement from its Joint Force Space Component Command (JFSCC).

Latest News