3 Chinese language astronauts return to Earth after engaged on house station: NPR
BEIJING (AP) — Three Chinese language astronauts landed within the northern desert on Sunday after six months of labor to finish the Tiangong Station, a logo of the nation’s bold house program, state tv reported.
The capsule carrying Commander Chen Dong and astronauts Liu Yang and Cai Xiuzhe landed at a touchdown website in northern China’s Gobi Desert at roughly 20:10 (1210 GMT), China Central Tv reported.
Earlier than their departure, they crossed paths for nearly 5 days with three colleagues who arrived on Wednesday as a part of the Shenzhou 15 mission for their very own six-month keep, marking the primary time in China that six astronauts had been in house on the identical time. This month, the third and final module of the station docked to it.
The astronauts had been taken out of the capsule by medical employees about 40 minutes after touchdown. They had been all smiling and searching in good situation, waving gleefully on the employees on the touchdown website.
“I really feel very lucky to have witnessed the completion of the essential construction of the Chinese language house station after six intense and eventful months in house,” stated Chen, who first stepped out of the capsule. “Like meteors, we returned to the arms of the Motherland.”
Liu, one other of the astronauts, stated she was touched by the assembly with family members and compatriots.
The three astronauts had been a part of the Shenzhou 14 mission, which launched in June. After arriving at Tiangong, Chen, Liu and Cai oversaw 5 rendezvous and dockings with varied spacecraft, together with one of many station’s three modules.
Additionally they carried out three spacewalks, broadcast a dwell science lecture from the station, and carried out a variety of experiments.
Tiangong is a part of official Chinese language plans for a everlasting human presence in orbit.
China constructed its personal station after it was expelled from the Worldwide House Station, largely over U.S. objections to Chinese language house packages’ shut ties to the Folks’s Liberation Military, the navy wing of the ruling Communist Get together.
With the arrival of the Shenzhou-15 mission, the station elevated to a most weight of 100 tons.
With no spacecraft hooked up, the Chinese language station weighs about 66 tons – a part of the Worldwide House Station, which launched its first module in 1998 and weighs about 465 tons.
With a lifespan of 10 to fifteen years, Tiangong might at some point be the one house station nonetheless up and operating if the Worldwide House Station retires across the finish of the last decade, as anticipated.
China in 2003 grew to become the third nation to independently ship an astronaut into orbit after the previous Soviet Union and the US.
China has additionally chalked up profitable uncrewed missions, with its Yutu 2 rover being the primary to discover the little-known far aspect of the Moon. Its Chang’e 5 probe additionally returned lunar rocks to Earth in December 2020 for the primary time because the Seventies, and one other Chinese language rover is in search of proof of life on Mars.
Officers are reportedly contemplating a potential manned mission to the moon, although no timeline has been given.