I was just talking to folks about this. "Chinese rocket debris" is yet another racist/xenophobic/anti-Chinese dogwhistle and y'all need to be more aware of that
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@zkat Okay but like a.) the SpaceX thing is also bad; we shouldn't be raining big chunks of metal on inhabited areas, and b.) the SpaceX launch was a system failure, right? US rockets are supposed to execute controlled deorbit burns, and SpaceX fucked that up, right?
If I understand correctly, there's some consternation here because this is the third (?) time China's just let stuff fall from the sky, and they won't answer questions about whether LM-5B even *has* controlled deorbit capabilities?
@meena @zkat Base masses are comparable (I think the Falcon 9 is ~65% of an LM-5B?), but Spacenews says the 5B core specifically is ~7x bigger than the Falcon 9 second stage--and the Falcon 9 is supposed to do a controlled deorbit: https://spacenews.com/huge-rocket-looks-set-for-uncontrolled-reentry-following-chinese-space-station-launch/
(mildly pissed at Musk here, as usual, for SpaceX not being more forthcoming about their deorbit failure)
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