Wednesday, March 04, 2009

China Readies Military Space Station – Launch Coincides With Shuttle Phaseout

Craig Covault writes on Spaceflight Now:

China is aggressively accelerating the pace of its manned space program by developing a 17,000 lb. man-tended military space laboratory planned for launch by late 2010. The mission will coincide with a halt in U.S. manned flight with phase-out of the shuttle.

The project is being led by the General Armaments Department of the People's Liberation Army, and gives the Chinese two separate station development programs.

Shenzhou 8, the first mission to the outpost in early 2011 will be flown unmanned to test robotic docking systems. Subsequent missions will be manned to utilize the new pressurized module capabilities of the Tiangong outpost.

Importantly, China is openly acknowledging that the new Tiangong outpost will involve military space operations and technology development.

More here.

Image source: Spaceflight Now


At Tue Mar 10, 05:21:00 PM PDT, Blogger Gergo said...

This is the last thing mankind needs. Let's continue blowing each other up in space too. Hopefully the economic recession will halt these mindless showoff projects that serve no other purpose but to ensure we won't even be able to live in peace in space.


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