Debris from a rocket that lifted part of China’s new space station into orbit has fallen into the sea in the Philippines, the Chinese government has announced.
China’s manned space agency said most of the final stage of the Long March-5B rocket burned up after entering the atmosphere.
Earlier, the agency said it planned to allow the booster to go unguided.
The location of the “landing area” cited by the announcement was in waters southeast of the Philippine city of Puerto Princesa on Palawan Island.
Philippine authorities did not immediately confirm whether anyone was affected.
China has previously drawn criticism for allowing rocket parts to fall back to Earth unchecked.
Last year, Nasa accused Beijing of “failing to meet its standards of responsibility regarding space debris” after parts of a Chinese rocket plunged into the Indian Ocean.
The country’s first space station, Tiangong-1, crashed into the Pacific Ocean in 2016 after Beijing confirmed it had lost control. An 18-ton rocket fell uncontrollably in May 2020.
China also protested after using a rocket to destroy one of its defunct weather satellites in 2007, creating a field of debris that other governments fear could endanger human health. other satellites.
Long March-5B on July 24, China’s most powerful rocket, put the Wentian laboratory into orbit on July 24. It was attached to the main module of the Galaxy, where the three astronauts live, on Monday.
The remains of a separate cargo spacecraft serving the station crashed into a predetermined area in the South Pacific Ocean after most of it burned up on re-entry, the government has announced.