Space Command, part of the Department of Defense, says it is "tracking the location of the Chinese Long March 5B (rocket) in space, but its exact entry point into the Earth's atmosphere can not be pinpointed until within hours of its re-entry".
The Global Times forgot to mention that Beijing's previous launch of a Long March-5B rocket came very close to taking out an African village, and possibly an African city, or that these rockets are over twice the size of the objects generally considered safe to put into orbit.
The launch of the first module of its "Heavenly Palace" space station in April was a milestone in Beijing's ambitious plan to establish a permanent human presence in space.
Although the risk to people on land isn't zero, Oltrogge told TheVerge, "it's a whole lot less" if pieces of the rocket are aiming for a large body of water.
The core stage of China's Long March 5B rocket is expected to reenter the Earth's atmosphere sometime on May 8 or later.
After its separation from the space station module, the rocket began to orbit the Earth in an irregular trajectory as it slowly lost altitude, making any predictions about where it will re-enter the atmosphere or fall back to the ground almost impossible.
China's space agency has yet to say whether the core stage of the huge rocket is being controlled.
But this Chinese rocket accidentally went into orbit around the Earth and is circling the planet on a path to eventually crash.
A Long March 5B rocket launching into orbit. Source CASS
"Drag will slow the object causing loss of altitude, bringing it down into denser atmosphere, which in turn causes more drag and further loss of velocity and altitude", Jason Herrin of the Earth Observatory Singapore, told the BBC.
Foreign Ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbing said Chinese authorities will release information about the re-entry of the rocket in a "timely manner".
In normal space launches, rocket bodies detach and fall on a planned path into the ocean.
The non-profit Aerospace Corp. expects the debris to hit the Pacific near the equator after passing over eastern USA cities.
The rocket is now in a low orbit, which means it circles around the Earth but is still gradually pulled down.
It's roughly 100 feet long and and would be among the biggest pieces of space debris to fall to Earth. The parts that don't burn up completely will remain and fall to Earth.
Chinese state media has over the past days played down fears the rocket might crash on inhabited land, suggesting it will fall somewhere in worldwide waters.