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Egypt's Astronomy Institute plays down fear over crash of out-of-control Chinese rocket on inhabited area

Based on our calculations, it was expected to circle over Egypt at 11pm local time on Thursday, but it passed over Arsih city at 5:15am, Rasha Ghonaim, head of the Space Researches department at the institute said

MENA , Friday 7 May 2021
rocket
File Photo: released by China's Xinhua News Agency, a Long March 5B rocket carrying a module for a Chinese space station lifts off from the Wenchang Spacecraft Launch Site in Wenchang in southern China's Hainan Province. AP
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Egypt's National Research Institute of Astronomy and Geophysics said on Friday the possibility that the Chinese rocket, that went out of control, lands in an inhabited area is very weak because water covers two-thirds of the total earth surface.

The Long March 5B rocket was launched in late April to carry the first module of China's future space station into orbit. The body of the rocket is currently circling Earth, about to enter the lower atmosphere.

At a seminar organised by On-Line Institute, Rasha Ghonim, head of the space researches department at the institute, said the only casualty resulting from the falling of space debris was reported in 1996 when a woman was hurt in her shoulder by the falling space junk.

The worst incident took place in 1969 when large parts of debris of space station fell on remote areas in Australia, she added.
She added that a team of the institute is following up on the movement of the rocket but still it is very hard to predict when it passes over Egypt or where it is going to crash.
Based on our calculations, it was expected to circle over Egypt at 11pm local time on Thursday, but it passed over Arish city at 5:15am, she added.

On Friday, China said the risk of damage from a rocket falling back to Earth was "extremely low" after the United States warned it could crash down onto an inhabited area.
 

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