Chinese crewed mission reaches new space station (VIDEO)

14:15, 16 October 2021
Chinese crewed mission reaches new space station (VIDEO) Photo:

Chinese spacecraft Shenzhou-13 with three astronauts aboard reached the building space station Tiangogng on Saturday morning, the China Manned Space Agency reported.

The mission consists of Zhai Zhigang, Wang Yaping, and Ye Guanfu, who are supposed to spend 180 days at the station to test the new Chinese space technology and conduct spacewalks.

"This will certainly be their longest mission, which is quite impressive when you consider how early it is in their human spaceflight regimen," Dean Cheng, a senior research fellow at the Davis Institute for National Security and Foreign Policy said.

It will be the second crewed mission during the building of the space station. The first three astronauts’ mission successfully ended last month.

Zhai Zhigang is the head of the mission and also was the first Chinese who performed a spacewalk in 2008 as Ye Guanfu is Zhigang’s deputy and assistant.

Wang Yaping is China's first female astronaut onboard the space station - and might be the first Chinese woman to do a spacewalk.

The name of the mission Shenzhou can be translated from Chinese as Divine Vessel.

A building of the multi-moduled Chinese space station Tiangogng began on April 29 of 2021 while the main module Tianhe had put into orbit. The building is expected to finish in 2022. The station can host three astronauts or six people during the crew exchange.

On September 16 The American company SpaceX launched its first private ship mission Inspiration4 to orbit with an all-civilian crew aboard.