The Long March launched last week was the second deployment of the 5B variant since its maiden flight in May a year ago.
"After monitoring and analysis, at 10:24 (0224 GMT) on May 9, 2021, the last-stage wreckage of the Long March 5B Yao-2 launch vehicle has reentered the atmosphere", the China Manned Space Engineering Office said in a statement, providing coordinates for a point in the Indian Ocean near the Maldives.
"U.S. Space Command is aware of and tracking the location of the Chinese Long March 5B in space, but its exact entry point into the Earth's atmosphere can not be pinpointed until within hours of its reentry", Lieutenant Colonel Angela Webb, of U.S. Space Command Public Affairs, told CBS News.
Space junk watchers had expected the core to come down sometime Saturday or Sunday, but couldn't predict early on when or where specifically because atmospheric variables, including the weather, could have a huge impact on the rocket's path, the astronomer Dr. Jonathan McDowell, of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, told Fox News on Friday. It was reported to have damaged several buildings, though no injuries were recorded.
Although there has been fevered speculation over exactly where the rocket - or parts of it - will land, there is a good chance any debris that does not burn up will just splash down into the ocean, given that the planet is 70 percent water.
Ever since large chunks of the NASA space station Skylab fell from orbit in July 1979 and landed in Australia, most countries have sought to avoid such uncontrolled re-entries through their spacecraft design, McDowell said.
Then US Central Command Commander Gen. Lloyd Austin III testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington Sept. 16 2015
The Global Times, a Chinese tabloid published by the official People's Daily, dismissed as "Western hype" concerns that the rocket is "out of control" and could cause damage.
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin told reporters on Friday that the debris would burn up on re-entry calling its descent "common worldwide practice".
Heavy-lift Long March 5 rockets have been key to China's near-term space ambitions - from the delivery of modules and crew of the planned space station to launches of exploratory probes to the Moon and even Mars.
The Tianhe launch was the first of 11 such missions needed to complete the station.
Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin had said the United States military had no plans to shoot it down, but suggested that China had been negligent in letting it fall out of orbit.
We encountered an issue signing you up.
Mass Shooting Reported at Wisconsin Oneida Nation Casino, Suspect in Custody
Green Bay police and the Brown County Sheriff's Office told The Associated Press they had no details on the casino incident. A spokesman for the Oneida tribe said they are shutting down all five casinos on their reservation.