This is not the first time that rockets or other space debris have fallen to Earth. What happened in the Long March 5B example?
China is building a new space station that requires a series of construction material launches. And when you put building materials in Earth orbit, parts of the missile itself retract. Long March 5B fell uncontrollably, but although the probability of hitting buildings was small, they had no control, which worried many.
Among other things, China has come under fire from NASA for irresponsibly handling space waste. Is NASA right in its criticism?
Both yes and no. The United States has also faced major problems over the years managing its return to the atmosphere. The most famous example is the summer of 1979, when Sweden was also for a period threatened by the multi-ton Skylab space station that the Americans sent and built for several years. He lost control when he returned to the Earth’s atmosphere. And it went as far as diverting aircraft from certain areas. He could have fallen into the sea, but he fell in a desert region of Australia.
Attempts are being made to colonize space, as many countries and companies are investing heavily. Which player is the best in the space race right now?
You are investing in slightly different ways. In the United States, many players, in addition to NASA – which are state-owned – are running space projects like Amazon founder Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin and Richard Branson Virgin Galactic. Elon Musk, with Space X, reached the furthest point and earned a contract to be with him when the United States sends its next astronauts to the moon. The United States is far ahead, and China is now trying to regain this lead. The Russians have slipped after a lot in recent years. I was in a very good position in the 1960s during the struggle with the United States to get to the moon first.
You have a long perspective on the issue of space, what is the most interesting development now?
– It’s a new race in which China is becoming a major player, countries like Japan have long-range plans to send their own astronauts with their own missiles and India is hoping to do so in 2022. Many are investing in Mars right now, with sensors and cars being controlled. In it from a distance, which seeks information about the existence of Mars once. And this is the big question that attracts me, and certainly almost everyone. Was there life there? Are we alone? Are there others like us?
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