Tiangong-1 is a prototype space station launched by the Chinese government in 2011. It originally had a two-year mission to test the effects of space travel on astronauts and the docking capabilities of other spacecraft. The mission was extended beyond its original plan before finally being abandoned because the operators of the station in China claimed that they no longer had control of it.

Tiangong-1 was large, weighing about 8,500 kilograms (19,000 lbs), and was capable of housing two astronauts at a time.

Although most of the station incinerated in the atmosphere upon reentry over the Pacific Ocean in early April 2018, the expectation was that the rocket engines were made of materials that would not burn up. Although it was once feared that these intact pieces might cause enormous damage to structures, animals, and human beings, no catastrophic events were reported.

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