A Huge Rocket Will Hit Earth This Weekend
Will Lubbock be hit by a giant space rocket this weekend?
The answer is, probably not, but as of this moment, nothing can be ruled out. According to the New York Times, Long March 5B, or at least a part of it, is falling towards Earth.
The 10-story, 23-ton giant piece of Chinses rocket is expected to hit Earth in what is called a "uncontrolled re-entry" sometime on Saturday or Sunday. Not only do officials not know when re-entry is happening, they don't even know where it is happening. And given the size of the object, it could do some damage even if it does break apart upon reentry.
To be honest, the chances of anyone being hit by anything are remote. Most likely the rocket will break apart over the ocean, but as of right now officials can't say. According to the New York Times, reentry could happen across a wide area.
For the Long March 5B booster, that could be anywhere between 41.5 degrees north latitude and 41.5 degrees south latitude. That means Chicago, located a fraction of a degree farther north, is safe, but major cities like New York could be hit by debris.
On Thursday, the Aerospace Corporation, a nonprofit largely financed by the federal government that performs research and analysis, predicts re-entry will occur on Saturday at 11:43 p.m. Eastern time. If that is accurate, debris could shower down over northeastern Africa, over Sudan.
It's expected that the rocket will be traveling at over 18,000 miles per hour when it re-enters our atmosphere. That means a change of minutes could shift the debris by "hundreds of miles". It also means we won't have a more accurate picture as to where the rocket could hit until hours before it does.
I wouldn't worry too much. Again, most likely we have nothing to worry about. Just keep your eyes on the sky from time to time this weekend.
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