China's first space station is expected to come crashing down to Earth within weeks and scientists estimate debris from Tiangong-1 will survive re-entry.
Scientists from the US-funded Aerospace Corporation have not been able to predict exactly where the hefty module will hit, but Aerospace said in a statement said that there was "a chance that a small amount of debris" from the module would hit the Earth.
NZ is one of many countries in the potential flight path.
The chances of debris hitting were slightly higher in New Zealand, northern China, the Middle East, central Italy, northern Spain, the northern states of the US, Australia's Tasmania, parts of South America and southern Africa, Aerospace said.
Due to changing conditions in space, it is not possible to accurately predict where the module will land.
"If this should happen, any surviving debris would fall within a region that is a few hundred kilometres in size," said Aerospace, a research organisation that advises government and private enterprise on space flight.
The European Space Agency said the out-of-control Chinese module which is carrying a "highly toxic chemical" as it hurtles towards Earth, would come down between March 24 and April 19, according to a report in the Guardian.
In 2016, officials from China confirmed that they could no longer maintain control of the space station Tiangong-1, which means "Heavenly Place" in Chinese, and that it would be crashing into the Earth in late 2017 or early 2018.
The spacecraft's 10.4 metre-long main body is made up of two cylinders of approximately equal length and it has two solar panels, each approximately 3 x 7m in size.
Aerospace has warned the space station might be carrying a highly toxic and corrosive fuel called hydrazine on board.
However, the corporation has insisted the chance of debris hitting anyone living in these countries is tiny.
Larger space stations have crashed into our planet previously without anyone being injured by the debris.
Aerospace said, "no known person has ever been harmed by re-entering space debris. Only one person has ever been recorded as being hit by a piece of space debris and, fortunately, she was not injured."
Source - Stuff
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Odd....hydrazine also a rocket fuel was used in trials for brain cancers in low dose powered form with Kathy Keeton(?)
Perhaps it will land on the Beehive. Or better still the golf course where Donkey and O-Bummer are playing. Wishful thinking...
The Beehive might be lucky if it houses the cleaning staff for N Parliament now G - been years since it was used for the precious ones... fyi