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