The Chinese authorities are planning to build their own orbital station in space. Work on the project is expected to begin in 2021. RIA Novosti writes about this with reference to the deputy head of the launch vehicle project “Changzheng-5»Qu Yiguan.
“From the very inception of the Changzheng-5 launch vehicle, it was determined that it would carry out the mission of launching China’s largest spacecraft. Starting next year, we are going to start performing launches as part of the mission to build a space station in our country. “Iguan said.
The station will be called Tiangong (Heavenly Palace) and will weigh 66 tons. She will get a T-shape. The main compartment called “Tianhe” will be placed in the center. Its length will be 16.6 meters and a diameter of 4.2 meters. It will contain housing and some of the equipment for experiments. It will be joined by two more experimental modules, each weighing more than 20 tons.
The station will be able to work simultaneously up to three cosmonauts or six people during a crew change. China wants to complete its construction by 2022. For this, 12 launches will be performed.
For the delivery of astronauts, China plans to use the Changzheng-2F launch vehicle with the Shenzhou manned spacecraft, which can accommodate three cosmonauts. The Changzheng-7 launch vehicle and the Tianzhou cargo ship will be used to deliver goods and fuel.
On November 24, China successfully launched the Chang’e-5 spacecraft. The purpose of the mission is to collect lunar soil and deliver it to Earth. According to the plan, the device should return back in 23 days. If successful, China will become the first country in 44 years to deliver geological imagery from the moon.
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