Thursday, March 29, 2018

Tiangong Disintegration

Update - 02/04/2018  

The Tiangong 1 has crashed in to the pacific ocean - Confirmed. Quote "Tiangong -met a fiery end in Earth's atmosphere today (April 1), breaking apart and burning up in the skies over the southern Pacific Ocean at about 8:16 p.m. EDT (0016 April 2 GMT), according to the U.S. Strategic Command's Joint Force Space Component Command (JFSCC)."

Update - 01/04.2018

Tiangong - 1 is still in space and disintegrating rapidly. The Space Station will Pass the Sri Lankan skies around 12.30 Midnight tonight (or 0.30 hrs on 2nd April) - this could be the last time it passes our skies as it is supposed to hit Earth's atmosphere around Malaysia and disintegrate to the Pacific Ocean. However, keep watch - you never know as Sat entry is quite unpredictable. 

Below Article credits - Theguardian online

Most of China’s broken eight-tonne space station will burn up, though there is a chance some parts will survive. Should you worry about getting hit?

Should I be worried?

No. The chances of being hit by part of the space station are basically zero.

About 70% of the Earth is covered with water and most of the rest of it is sparsely populated. If any of the space station does reach the surface, it is incredibly unlikely it will hit any person, let alone you. In 1997 a woman was struck on the shoulder by an object, believed to be part of a Delta rocket. But she was not injured. She is thought to be the only person ever struck by spaceship debris.
In terms of size, Tiangong-1 is only the 50th largest spacecraft to come down, and there have been no recorded deaths or injuries from people being struck by debris from any of them. The largest uncontrolled entry was SkyLab, the 77-tonne US space station, which disintegrated over Western Australia. It didn’t injure anyone but large parts of it were later collected.

China has not released all the details about the design of Tiangong-1, so it is not possible to say how much of it will survive re-entry. In 2011 Nasa calculated the chance of a smaller 6.5-tonne object striking someone was about one in 3,200. That means the chance it would hit any particular person – you, for example, – is about one in 21 trillion. It is hard to imagine a more unlikely way to die.

Where is it most likely to crash?

It is orbiting at about 27,000km/h, so a crash site is virtually impossible to predict. If you get the entry time off by an hour, you’ve got the location off by at least 27,000km.
The satellite can only re-enter within the latitudes of its orbit – 43° North and 43° South. That rules out a descent over the UK but it does cover much of the Earth, including vast stretches of North and South America, China, the Middle East, Africa, Australia, parts of Europe – and great swaths of the Pacific and Atlantic oceans.

Because of its specific orbit, it is more likely to impact at the edges of that area – near the southern or northern latitudes.

Hence, in general, there is nothing to worry about any damages caused by Tiangongs disintegration. However, it would be a great spectacle to view if at all we get a chance. For Sri Lanka, currently it's mentioned as 1st April Mid day (12.00 noon). However, the times could change cause these types of things are hard to predict.