China is all set to launch its second crew of three astronauts to its new house station — together with the primary lady to go to the orbiting outpost.
The Shenzhou 13 spacecraft is scheduled to launch atop a Long March 2F rocket from Jiuquan Satellite tv for pc Launch Middle within the Gobi Desert at 12:23 p.m. EDT (1623 GMT) on Friday (Oct. 15; 00:23 Oct. 16 native time), Lin Xiqiang, deputy director of the China Manned Area Company, revealed at a press convention on Thursday (Oct. 14). You can watch the launch live here and on the Area.com homepage, courtesy of the state-run China Central Tv community, starting at about 9:25 a.m. EDT (1325 GMT).
Shenzhou 13 will launch simply as China’s orbiting Tianhe space station module passes over the launch web site at Jiuquan, permitting the spacecraft to catch up and dock with Tianhe round eight hours later.
Associated: The latest news about China’s space program
The crew for the six-month-long mission have been confirmed to be Zhai Zhigang (commander), Wang Yaping and Ye Guangfu. The trio had been the backup to the not too long ago accomplished Shenzhou 12 mission.
Zhai, who grew to become the primary Chinese language citizen to hold out a spacewalk through the Shenzhou 7 mission in 2008, will command the mission. This can be Ye’s first flight, whereas Wang will develop into the primary feminine astronaut to go to Tianhe. Wang was a member of the Shenzhou 10 mission in 2013 and delivered an educational lecture from space.
Main mission targets for Shenzhou 13 embody testing vital applied sciences for meeting and development of the house station, which can obtain two extra modules in 2022.
Most notable is testing transferring a module from one docking port to a different utilizing handbook teleoperation of Tianhe’s robotic arm. The uncrewed Tianzhou 2 spacecraft, which delivered provides for Shenzhou 12, can be used as a take a look at article, Chinese language officers mentioned.
Two to 3 extravehicular actions, or spacewalks, are additionally deliberate through the Shenzhou 13 mission. The foremost goal can be to put in an adaptor that can permit Tianhe’s massive arm to hook up with one other, smaller arm that can be on a future module.
Different targets embody additional verification of the well being, dwelling and dealing help applied sciences for astronauts’ six-month keep on orbit and the efficiency of scientific and technological experiments in fields reminiscent of house drugs and microgravity physics.
Shenzhou 13 will dock on the nadir port of Tianhe, which faces Earth. This implies the spacecraft might want to make a radial, or R-bar, rendezvous to get near the module, approaching Tianhe from a route perpendicular to the Earth, as a substitute of alongside the road of Tianhe’s flight path as with extra routine docking maneuvers.
Zhai, 55, is returning to house after 13 years.
“Talking on behalf of our crew and myself, I am assured about, and able to finishing, the Shenzhou 13 mission. The boldness comes from the technological and bodily preparations in addition to the mastery of the spacecraft’s gear system,” Zhai mentioned at a press convention on the Jiuquan Satellite tv for pc Launch Middle on Thursday. “Confidence comes when these preparations are in place. With confidence, the spaceflight isn’t that troublesome.”
Spaceflight rookie Ye Guangfu, 41, expressed his delight at being chosen: “I am very glad to have the ability to perform this mission. As a second-batch astronaut, I really feel very honored and proud that I’ll keep in orbit for six months in my first house mission. On the identical time, that is certainly a take a look at for me, however I’m totally assured that I can full this process.”
Requested if Wang Yaping would as soon as once more ship a stay lecture from orbit to college students again in China, Lin confirmed that such public outreach actions can be part of the Shenzhou 13 mission.
Lin additionally addressed security procedures. Within the occasion of a major problem and lack of operate of the Shenzhou 13 spacecraft, Lin mentioned an emergency launch of a rescue spacecraft can be “initiated instantly to dock with the house station and convey astronauts again in a well timed method.”
The Shenzhou 13 spacecraft and Lengthy March 2F rocket for Friday’s mission had beforehand been on standby at Jiuquan in case of an emergency affecting the Shenzhou 12 mission.
Launch is anticipated to be streamed by Chinese language media, with one other stay feed accessible by means of the CGTN Youtube channel.
https://www.house.com/china-shenzhou-13-astronaut-launch-webcast | China to launch second crew to new house station Friday