Chinese Space Lab Burns Up in the Atmosphere

A defunct Chinese space lab met its expected end early Monday morning as its remaining fragments plunged into the South Pacific.

China’s Manned Space Engineering Office said the Tiangong-1 spacecraft “mostly” burned up in the atmosphere.

Any pieces that failed to disintegrate during the fiery trip back to Earth fell harmlessly into the ocean. 

It took about two hours for the craft burn up once it hit Earth’s atmosphere.

There had been predictions parts of the space lab would land in the South Atlantic with some pieces posing a very small threat to people on the ground

Tiangong-1, was the size of a school bus and weighed eight and a half tons. 

Tiangong-1, which means “Heavenly Palace” in English, was the largest manmade object to re-enter Earth’s atmosphere in a decade.

It was launched in 2011 and served as an orbiting laboratory for manned Chinese space missions until officials determined its lifespan was complete. It was taken out of service in 2016. 

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