China on Sunday launched a new three-man mission to complete assembly work on its permanent orbiting space station called Tiangong.
The Shenzhou 14 crew will spend six months in orbit overseeing the addition of two laboratory units that will join the space station’s core unit, called Tianhe, Released in April 2021.
This is the seventh of 11 missions that will go into space to complete the assembly of the station, which is already in the final stages.
A Chinese rocket is launched towards the country’s space station – Photo: Reproduction / Globo News
The Tianhe module is 16.6 meters long and 4.2 meters in diameter, and serves as a control center and home for the astronauts.
Commander Qin Dong and fellow astronauts Liu Yang and Kai Xuzhi will assemble the three-module structure that already connects Tianhe with modules called Wentian and Mengtian.
Chinese crew members leaving for space – Photo: Li Gang / Xinhua via AP
For decades, China has invested billions in its space program to reach Europeans, Russians and Americans.
The Asian giant sent the first astronaut into space in 2003.
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