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Old April 30th, 2021 #1
Ray Allan
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Default China launches core module of new space station to orbit

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The construction of China's space station is underway.

The core element of the Chinese Space Station launched to Earth orbit tonight (April 28), lifting off at 11:23 pm EDT (0323 GMT on April 29) atop a heavy lift Long March 5B rocket from the Wenchang Spacecraft Launch Site on the island of Hainan.

The 54-foot-long (16.6 meters) module, known as Tianhe ("Harmony of the Heavens") is the first space station component to launch. It will be joined in low Earth orbit later by two slightly smaller elements, forming a T-shaped space station that China aims to complete by the end of 2022.

But Tianhe will see considerable action before then: A Chinese cargo spacecraft is expected to visit the module next month, and three astronauts will come aboard in June, if all goes according to plan.
https://www.space.com/china-launches...-space-station

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Last edited by Ray Allan; April 30th, 2021 at 05:01 AM.
 
Old April 30th, 2021 #2
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Well, this isn't good...

Huge rocket looks set for uncontrolled reentry following Chinese space station launch

https://spacenews.com/huge-rocket-lo...tation-launch/
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Old May 1st, 2021 #3
Nikola Bijeliti
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Originally Posted by Ray Allan View Post
Well, this isn't good...

Huge rocket looks set for uncontrolled reentry following Chinese space station launch

https://spacenews.com/huge-rocket-lo...tation-launch/
Depends where it lands.
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Old May 2nd, 2021 #4
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Originally Posted by Nikola Bijeliti View Post
Depends where it lands.
We're both old enough to remember Skylab's reentry, of course. 70 percent of Earth's surface is ocean, so the chances are small the Chinese rocket will fall on an inhabited area.
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Old May 2nd, 2021 #5
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Originally Posted by Nikola Bijeliti View Post
Depends where it lands.
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Originally Posted by Ray Allan View Post
We're both old enough to remember Skylab's reentry, of course. 70 percent of Earth's surface is ocean, so the chances are small the Chinese rocket will fall on an inhabited area.
True, but what I meant was that it could be good if it lands on people we don't like. One can only hope.
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Old May 3rd, 2021 #6
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The interior of the core module looks clean, almost sci-fi-like compared to the 20-year-old ISS. This is only a mockup though, the real one will become more cluttered with equipment and storage once astronauts start doing work aboard like we see on ISS. Tianhe's basic design is patterned after the 1970s/80s Soviet 'Salyut' and 'Mir' with new Chinese-designed components. The 'Zvezda' Russian core segment of ISS also derives from Salyut/Mir.
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Old May 7th, 2021 #7
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Might the Chinese rocket land on Washington, D.C.?


Maybe my prayers have been anwered!
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Old May 8th, 2021 #8
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Originally Posted by Nikola Bijeliti View Post
Might the Chinese rocket land on Washington, D.C.?

China rocket falling to Earth spotted over Washington, D.C.

Maybe my prayers have been anwered!
Yes, if it's going to hit anywhere, hit Washington.

https://www.presstv.com/Detail/2021/...entagon-rocket
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Old May 8th, 2021 #9
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It looks as though it may land in the Mediteranean. If it does, let's hope it takes out some African vessels smuggling migrants into Europe.

Here's a live tracker:


EDIT: It landed in the Indian Ocean.
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Last edited by Nikola Bijeliti; May 8th, 2021 at 10:30 PM.
 
Old May 8th, 2021 #10
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Originally Posted by Nikola Bijeliti View Post
It looks as though it may land in the Mediteranean. If it does, let's hope it takes out some African vessels smuggling migrants into Europe.

Here's a live tracker:

Chinese Rocket Expected to Crash Into Earth | Real-time Tracker

EDIT: It landed in the Indian Ocean.
On one of the previous ground tracks, I noticed the booster would pass directly over Israel--too bad it missed!

This was actually the second launch of the Long March 5B core stage-only variant, with the first being in May 2020. I don't recall this big of hoopla over that one which also made an uncontrolled reentry. Just convenient now due to the ramped-up China propaganda in the media, I suppose. CNSA is going to launch at least four more CZ-5Bs to complete the space station by 2022. I don't know how much of a weight penalty it would have been to add some deorbit retrorockets on the booster, the Chinese didn't consider it to be a big priority.
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Old May 8th, 2021 #11
Nikola Bijeliti
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Originally Posted by Ray Allan View Post
On one of the previous ground tracks, I noticed the booster would pass directly over Israel--too bad it missed!

This was actually the second launch of the Long March 5B core stage-only variant, with the first being in May 2020. I don't recall this big of hoopla over that one which also made an uncontrolled reentry. Just convenient now due to the ramped-up China propaganda in the media, I suppose. CNSA is going to launch at least four more CZ-5Bs to complete the space station by 2022. I don't know how much of a weight penalty it would have been to add some deorbit retrorockets on the booster, the Chinese didn't consider it to be a big priority.
Let's see what happens when one of those rocket stages lands in a civilized area and does significant damage. Will there be consequences, or will it be a repeat of the Fukushima nuclear power plant disaster, where Japan suffered no external consequences?
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