China has announced the successful launch of an unmanned spacecraft on Tuesday. This is another step towards the establishment of China’s first space station by 2020.
Shenzhou-8 spacecraft was launched in the Gobi Desert in northern China, as reported by Xinhua news agency. At an altitude of 200 kilometers above the Earth, the ship separated from the carrier rocket Long March-2F.
The ship will unite with the Tiangong-1 or "heavenly mansions" in the next few days. This will be the first in the history of this country docking modules in space.
This experimental docking runs in preparation for China to create its first space station by 2020. The astronauts will be able to live there for a few months, just as it does on the ISS.
In case of success, China will launch another two spacecraft next year to conduct additional experimental dockings.
At least one of them will be manageable. Among the candidates for the flight, there are two women who are trained to fly. If the choice falls on them, it will be the first woman to China sent into space.
China began its program of managed space flight in 1990, with the purchase of Russian technology. Already in 2003 he became the third country to send a man into space, after the Soviet Union and the United States.
China sees its ambitious space program as a symbol of strengthening its position in the world.