According to a tweet from a Twitter account that specializes in reporting on the Chinese space program, at least one piece of the upper stage from the Long March 2F rocket that launched the present Tiangon space station crew on the Shenzhou-14 crashed into the middle of Mediterranean Sea when the stage’s orbit decayed.
Most parts burned during the reentry while small debris splashed in Mediterranean Sea around E5.2° N39.1°
According to both this Twitter site as well as the Aerospace Corporation’s re-entry site, the event occurred on June 20, 2022. The latter site however says the stage burned up over the Atlantic, though it also indicated a one hour margin of error both before or after that time. If the stage thus stayed up just a bit longer, its orbit would have brought it down exactly where the former site states.
If this is so, it indicates that the Chinese either could not or made no effort to control the de-orbit, something that should be standard for any upper stage that has mass that could hit the ground.
Hat tip from reader Jay.
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