Shenzhou VIII to be launched in 2nd half of 2011
China will launch the “Tiangong I” space station and the “Shenzhou VIII” spaceship in the first and second half of 2011 respectively, conducting China’s first rendezvous and docking test, said Niu Hongguang Wednesday, deputy commander-in-chief of the China Manned Space Program.
China will also launch the “Shenzhou IX” spaceship and the “Shenzhou X” spaceship in the first and second half of 2012 respectively, realizing rendezvous and docking between the spaceships and the space station and making a breakthrough in rendezvous and docking technology, said Niu, also deputy to the National People’s Congress.
Zhang Jianqi, former deputy commander-in-chief of the China Manned Space Program, recently revealed that China has chosen its second batch of taikonauts consisting of 5 males and 2 females. The 2 female taikonauts come from military air transport units and belong to the 7th batch of Chinese female pilots.
By People’s Dailly Online