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Three Chinese Astronauts Dock At New Space Station For Six Month Stay

Tyler Durden's Photo
by Tyler Durden
Monday, Jun 06, 2022 - 02:00 AM

Three Chinese astronauts, or taikonauts, have docked at the under-construction Tiangong space station Sunday evening after launching from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in the Gobi Desert earlier in the day, according to Space.com

The three Shenzhou 14 taikonauts — commander Chen Dong, Liu Yang, and Cai Xuzhe — will spend six months on the Tiangong, overseeing the addition of two laboratory modules (with the Wentian module set to launch next month and the Mengtian in October). When the modules are connected, Tiangong will be a T-shaped station smaller than the aging International Space Station (ISS).

The trio of taikonauts will welcome Shenzhou 15 crew aboard the station at the end of the year, making the first time six people will be living aboard.

Here's a docking video of the spacecraft with the station.

Last month, China released a never-before-seen image of Tiangong, orbiting above the Earth at 250 miles. 

The station's completion will mark President Xi Jinping's ambitions to be a leader in space as NASA is set to retire the aging ISS by 2031. This could mean China might have the only space station orbiting the Earth unless the US and its partners announce plans for a new station. 

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