Chinese rocket’s night-time re-entry causes social media frenzy in western U.S.

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A Chinese rocket body streaking across the night sky over the western United States lit up social media as people shared photos and video of the bright object.

ChineseRocketThe Chinese CZ-7 re-entered the atmosphere Wednesday night, U.S. Strategic Command spokeswoman Julie Ziegenhorn confirmed. That’s when people in Nevada, Utah and California took to social media to report a small fireball streaking across the sky.

Photographer Ian Norman was taking pictures of the night sky with friends in Alabama Hills, California, near the eastern Sierra Nevada, when he saw the light and started recording, thinking the flash was a meteor. “It was really strange to see something that bright,” he said Thursday. “I thought it was just a really big meteor, but it was so slow-moving, I had never seen anything like that.”

The former SpaceX engineer heads out a few nights every month, but it was the first re-entry he’s seen.

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