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MOSCOW, October 24 (Itar-Tass) —— Pieces of the German ROSAT satellite that did not burn in the atmosphere fell outside Russia, Space Troops spokesman, Colonel Alexei Zolotukhin said.
“For 30 days specialists at the Main Space Monitoring Centre were constantly analysing changes in the German satellite’s orbit and made daily calculations to determine the date, time and place of its fall,” he told Itar-Tass on Monday, October 24.
“As specialists expected, pieces of the ROSAT satellite that did not burn in the atmosphere fell at 05:08 Moscow time on Sunday outside Russia,” Zolotukhin added.
ROSAT is a telescope for studying sources of space Roentgen radiation created jointly by Germany, the United States and Britain. The 273 million U.S. dollar telescope was put in space on June 1, 1990 by an American Delta carrier rocket. In 1998, its astronavigation system stopped functioning, and the satellite was officially pronounced dead in February 1999.
The satellite weighed 2.4 tonnes and as many as 30 of its large pieces weighing a total of 1.7 tonnes could have reached the Earth.