Possibly between March 31 and April 4, the remains of the Chinese space station Tiangong-1, traveling at 17,000 mph, will enter the Earth’s atmosphere.
Being approximately the size of a bus, the Tiangong-1 space station will be the largest man-made object to reenter the atmosphere of our planet in a decade.
However, it seems that there is nothing to worry about, as revealed by the Chinese space program, the nine-ton weight device will burn completely when it enters the atmosphere and comes in contact with the air, so it will not impact the ground.
Despite this, there are possibilities that some pieces could survive and fall to the Earth’s surface, although it has not been possible to determine exactly where they would fall.
The European Space Agency (ESA) noted that some areas of southern Europe, including Spain, Italy and Greece, were in the range of impact.
Many other areas around the world are also potential crash sites, including all of Africa, almost all of South America, Australia and a good part of Asia.
Even if some piece was to survive burning in the atmosphere, as most of the Earth is covered by water or uninhabited, ESA believes that the likelihood of the space station hitting someone is “10 million times less than the annual probability to be hit by lightning. ”
In addition, the station no longer has the initial mass of nine tons due to fuel consumption. It is reported to have a mass similar to that of other satellites that make uncontrolled reentries a couple of times a month without anyone noticing it .
China’s Space Agency It was announced in September 2016 that the Tiangong-1 space station had been left adrift and that its orbit was progressively being degraded, and the planned controlled reentry could not be performed.
This indicated that inevitably it was going to fall to Earth, but at that moment it was not known neither where nor when.
At least now we know when, and this could happen next weekend.