An out-of-control Chinese rocket may have dumped debris in Africa after falling from space


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On Monday, a massive, out-of-control Chinese rocket fell out of the sky off the west coast of Africa, becoming one of the largest human-made objects ever to make an uncontrolled descent to Earth from space. At first, the rocket seemed to harmlessly slam into the Atlantic Ocean. But now it seems that some pieces of debris may have hit solid ground, according to local reports from Côte d’Ivoire describing metallic objects that apparently fell from the sky.

The rocket that just made a chaotic return to Earth was the core of China’s powerful Long March 5B rocket, which launched on May 5th. The mission marked the first time China had launched this particular rocket variant to space. Ultimately, the mission was a success, allowing China to test this massive new vehicle and put an experimental new spacecraft into orbit.