China sends its 4th Human Spaceflight Shenzhou-9 into Space

Shenzhou-9, China’s 4th human spaceflight launched from the Jiuquan satellite launch centre in Gansu state.

The spacecraft which is 30.3 feet long and 9.1 feet diameter is on the 1st manned docking mission and it will lay the foundation for Chinese plans to establish a space station by 2020

Shenzhou-9 may take at least 20 days to execute this space mission. During the mission the crew will perform automated docking procedure followed by scientific experiments, technical tests and physical exercises conducted in the space lab. The crew will perform manual docking with the Tiangong-1 or Heavenly Palace Space Laboratory Module, which has been revolving around the earth since 29 September 2011.

Although China has assured the world that it will not indulge in space warfare, it is spending billions of dollars to realize its ambitious space programs. China had disclosed a 5-year space programme, in which it declared to establish a space lab and collect sample from the moon by 2016. Earlier, the Chinese government had proposed a mission to land on the moon and to create a manned space station by year 2020.

Some major milestones reached by China in chronological order:

  • 1999: China started its manned space programme with the launch of Shenzhou-1 without any crew on board.
  • 2001: Shenzhou-2 blasted off with animals on board.
  • 2003: China launched its 1st manned space craft.
  • 2008: It performed a space walk.
  • 2011: it did an unmanned docking between a module and rocket.

The launch of Shenzhou-9 is an indication of China’s fortitude to achieve technological advancement at par United States and Russia.

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