April 17, 2024


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The mysterious light show over California was Chinese space debris falling to Earth

The mysterious light show over California was Chinese space debris falling to Earth

US News

Experts said that the mysterious lines of light spotted over California were caused by Chinese space debris falling to Earth.

Residents from Sacramento to San Diego were dazzled by the light display around 1:30 a.m. Tuesday. While speculation ranged from a meteor shower to UFOs, it was ultimately determined that it was nothing more than the remains of a Chinese spacecraft re-entering the atmosphere.

The pile of space debris was the orbital module of China's Shenzhou 15 spacecraft, astrophysicist and satellite tracker Jonathan McDowell It was confirmed in a social media post.

The Shenzhou 15 vehicle has been floating in orbit for more than a year after launching three astronauts to the Chinese Tiangong space station in November 2022 on a six-month mission. According to Space.com.

A large piece of Chinese space junk crashed into Earth over California early Tuesday morning amsmeteoors
Experts concluded that the fireball was Chinese space debris that returned to the atmosphere. amsmeteoors
The lights were spotted around 1:30 a.m. Tuesday. amsmeteoors

Videos Obtained by ABC7 Several fireballs showed up in long streaks of light in the night sky.

The Shenzhou orbiter, which weighs about 3,300 pounds, provides additional space for astronauts in space, according to Space.com.

The debris came from the Shenzhou 15 spacecraft, which launched to the Chinese space station in November 2022. CNS/AFP via Getty Images

The newspaper reported that the unit is not designed to return to Earth safely after its mission. The Shenzhou Reentry Module is designed to do this with astronauts on board.

The unit was expected to reenter Earth's atmosphere early Tuesday morning, according to ABC7.

Many who saw the scene initially thought it might have been part of SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket, which had launched 22 Starlink satellites from Vandenberg Space Force Base in Santa Barbara about six hours earlier.

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