China’s uncontrolled rocket crashes down over the Indian Ocean

A Long March 5B rocket with the Wentian lab module lifts off from the Wenchang Space Launch Site. | Photo by Yang Guanyu/Xinhua via Getty Images

China’s uncontrolled Long March 5B rocket reentered the Earth’s atmosphere over the Indian Ocean, landing somewhere near Sarawak, the Malaysian state on the island of Borneo.

The US Space Command confirmed the rocket’s reentry at 12:45PM ET, but it remains unclear where its debris landed. In a translated post on Weibo, China’s Manned Space Agency said the rocket reentered near the same area, and that most of it burned up on its way down.

On July 24th, China used a Long March 5B rocket to launch a lab module to its unfinished Tiangong space station. Unlike most rockets, the Long March 5B thrusts its first stage into orbit when delivering its payload. This piece, which…

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