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Shenzhou 9′s docking mission success carrying China’s first space woman may make others rue wrong turns

2 Jul 2012, 12:15 UTC
Shenzhou 9′s docking mission success carrying China’s first space woman may make others rue wrong turns
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China made further progress in its manned space programme. Not only did it make its first manned docking as its Shenzhou 9 spacecraft linked up with the Tiangong mini-space station, on board the craft as part of its three ”taikonaut” crew was China’s first female astronaut.

Shenzhou 9′s crew as seen on television during the latter stages of their launch. Courtesy: CCTV
China successfully launched its Shenzhou 9 spacecraft at 1037 on 16 June. The Long March 2F/G flight carrying the spacecraft took place from the Jiuquan launch site. The spacecraft was carrying three Chinese atronauts {“Taikonauts”) into orbit: Jing Haipeng, Liu Wang and Liu Yang – China’s first female astronaut.
In a show of the Chinese leadership’s confidence in its space programme, Chinese television, CCTV, was allowed to broadcast the launch live. The impressive coverage included the major seperation events and deployment of the craft’s solar arrays. After a few days in orbit, the Shenzhou spacecraft used an automatic system make a precision docking with the Tiangong 1 mini-space station/laboratory at 0608 GMT on 18 June. The hatch was opened and the two male crew entered the space station at circa 0910 GMT.
With all three ...

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