/nUpcoming and Recent Decays and Re-entries - eventually air drag, gravity or retro-fire mean that a spacecraft or satellite is no longer able to stay in orbit. It re-enters the atmosphere to be destroyed or make a safe landing.
Orbital Focus - International Spaceflight Facts and Figures
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Launches and Orbital Operations

Tyneside, UK
2022 May 21
Saturday, Day 141

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Feeling the Heat!

Air drag and, sometimes, gravitational effects cause satellites to re-enter the Earth's atmosphere. Occasionally, re-entry is caused by a deliberate decision of a satellite owner to fire a retro-rocket and bring some part of a space vehicle back to Earth.

Most re-entries result in the vehicle being destroyed by frictional heating as it passes through the Earth's atmosphere. Some fragments may get through and hit the Earth's surface - hence the system of TIP messages to warn of the event. Only a space vehicle fitted with a heat shield will get through the atmosphere for a landing.

NOTE - Names used here are as used by Space-Track rather than the more-descriptive ones in the Orbital Focus tables.

Anticipated Re-entries

Information comes from Space-Track. Most entries are from the 60-day decay prediction messages that are updated each week on Thursday at about 01:00 UTC. If the re-entry date has already passed then you might find the object is also in the actual re-entry list further down the page.

Below are re-entries expected over the next few weeks. The table includes only natural re-entries of satellites and rocket bodies. It excludes debris items and planned events like a Soyuz or a Dragon spacecraft returning from the ISS.

Cat No Designation Name
Date UTC
Issued UTC
44374    2019-037KPROMETHEUS 2-72022 May 202022 May 19
45258    1998-067RBPHOENIX2022 May 312022 May 19
47925    1998-067SBRSP-012022 May 312022 May 19
44366    2019-037BPROMETHEUS 2-92022 Jun 32022 May 19
46927    1998-067RXDESCENT2022 Jun 62022 May 19
46921    1998-067RRSPOC2022 Jun 92022 May 19
46923    1998-067RTNEUTRON-12022 Jun 92022 May 19
44369    2019-037EACRUX 12022 Jun 102022 May 19
47931    1998-067SHGUARANISAT-12022 Jun 172022 May 19

Recent TIP Messages

Publication of TIP messages is not a matter of routine and they are not issued for all re-entries. They are more up to date and more precise than entries in the table and take precedence over them.

Readers unfamiliar with how to interpret TIP messages are recommended to read the Note at the bottom of the page.

Sometimes there may be a delay between the final TIP message and the re-entry being formally logged in Space-Track's Catalogue so a Message here may relate to a re-entry that has not yet moved from the 'Anticipated' list to the 'Recent' list.

List updated: 2022 May 21, 08:47 UTC

Cat No &
Date & Time UTC
Lat, Long & Heading
(10 km altitude)
TIP Message
Issued UTC
2022 May 21 14:52
± 120 minutes
2022 May 21 08:35
± 1 minutes
45°.6 north, 138°.8 west
northbound, ± 0.01 orbits
2022 May 21 07:32
ELECTRON R/B2022 May 18 12:13
± 42 minutes
18°.8 south, 14°.6 west
southbound, ± 0.5 orbits
2022 May 18 17:07
COSMOS 25552022 May 18 01:53
± 37 minutes
15°.4 north, 146°.4 east
southbound, ± 0.4 orbits
2022 May 18 06:52
AXIOM-1 DEB2022 May 14 09:02
± 1 minutes
79°.1 north, 135°.3 east
northbound, ± 0.01 orbits
2022 May 14 10:06
MTI2022 May 14 01:15
± 1 minutes
79°.1 north, 135°.3 east
northbound, ± 0.01 orbits
2022 May 14 08:57

Recent Re-entries

This table is extracted from Space-Track's Catalogue and lists major re-entries that occurred in the last 30 days, whether natural or deliberate. The list is updated every few hours.

Cat No Designation Name (SpaceTrack) Date UTC
52330   2022-044ACOSMOS 25552022 May 18
52428   2022-047ALELECTRON R/B2022 May 18
42851   2017-042ACFLOCK 2K 042022 May 17
42873   2017-042BAFLOCK 2K 442022 May 17
26102   2000-014AMTI2022 May 14
49126   2021-080BCZ-3B R/B2022 May 12
42699   2017-025BFALCON 9 R/B2022 May 11
42897   2017-042CAFLOCK 2K 062022 May 9
45410   2020-019BCSTARLINK-12852022 May 9
45257   1998-067RAOBJECT RA2022 May 6
49407   2021-103ADRAGON ENDURANCE2022 May 6
47926   1998-067SCOBJECT SC2022 May 5
44282   2019-029AZSTARLINK-802022 May 4
44911   2019-097BCZ-5 R/B2022 May 4
47312   2021-002DOBJECT D2022 May 4
51440   1998-067TCOBJECT TC2022 May 3
42896   2017-042BZFLOCK 2K 092022 May 1
47924   1998-067SAOBJECT SA2022 May 1
43933   2019-003BORIGAMISAT-12022 Apr 30
45262   1998-067RFRADSAT-U2022 Apr 30
46571   2020-070ARSTARLINK-17532022 Apr 30
46797   2020-074BLSTARLINK-19472022 Apr 30
47755   2021-017AKSTARLINK-21722022 Apr 30
47765   2021-017AVSTARLINK-21832022 Apr 30
49964   2021-122DCZ-4B R/B2022 Apr 30
42854   2017-042AFFLOCK 2K 472022 Apr 27
44790   1998-067QVRWASAT-12022 Apr 27
52204   2022-037AAXIOM-12022 Apr 25
42894   2017-042BXFLOCK 2K 112022 Apr 24
47156   2020-088ALSTARLINK-18702022 Apr 24
47758   2021-017ANSTARLINK-21762022 Apr 23
48590   2021-041APSTARLINK-22462022 Apr 23
47553   2021-009FSTARLINK-19512022 Apr 22

Note on TIP Messages

Close to re-entry time for many items, SpaceTrack issues TIP Messages with a more-precise warning of the event. The meaning of the TIP acronym is 'Tracking and Impact Prediction'.

The message includes an estimated latitude and longitude for when the object will go through a height of 10 kilometres (definition - Space-Track) above the ground based on the estimated time. It is a rough indication of the start point of the ellipse within which debris might fall given that horizontal velocity will have reduced to near-zero because of air resistance. In most cases, it is meaningless in practical terms because of length of the Window included in the Message covers a long track across the Earth's surface.

TIP Messages are often a source of confusion as people take the predicted time literally and ignore the error margin (Window) that is also part of the message. In 2011 RIA-Novosti used a TIP Message, issued several weeks in advance, to pinpoint a village in North Africa, doggedly insisting that it would feel the full force of of Phobos-Grunt’s re-entry. SpaceTrack's Window was ±2 days, representing over one million kilometres of ground track and a large proportion of the Earth's surface between 52° North and 52° South.

Page information updated as available

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