24 Oct '11, 1am

Falling German research satellite crashed into Earth somewhere in the South-east Asia region, says US scientist

BERLIN (AP) - A defunct German research satellite crashed into the Earth somewhere in South-east Asia on Sunday, a US scientist said - but no one is still quite sure where. Most parts of the minivan-sized Rosat research satellite were expected to burn up as they hit the atmosphere at speeds up to 450kmh, but up to 30 fragments weighing a total of 1.7 tonnes could have crashed, the German Aerospace Center said. Jonathan McDowell of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics in Cambridge, Massachusetts, said the satellite appears to have gone down over South-east Asia. He said two Chinese cities with millions of inhabitants each, Chongqing and Chengdu, had been in the satellite's projected path during its re-entry time. 'But if it had come down over a populated area there probably would be reports by now,' the astrophysicist, who tracks man-made space objects, told The ...

Full article: http://www.straitstimes.com/BreakingNews/TechandScience/S...

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