China’s Tiangong 1 space station, part of an ambitious space project that “ceased functioning” in 2016, re-entered Earth’s atmosphere early on Monday morning, the country’s Manned Space Agency said. The 10.4-meter long spacecraft has been making its way back to Earth since China lost control of it for unknown reasons in 2016. The space station entered the Earth’s atmosphere over the South Pacific and largely burned up upon re-entry, the Chinese state media said. “There is no need for people to worry about its re-entry into the atmosphere,” China’s Manned Space Engineering Office said in a statement on state media before the station’s re-entry. “It won’t crash to the Earth fiercely, as in sci-fi movie scenarios, but will look more like a shower of meteors,” the agency said. The Chinese government is already working on a new, larger orbital station that could replace Tiangong 1—one that could give China a big advantage over the U.S.
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