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  China's Tiangong-1 unmanned space module

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Author Topic:   China's Tiangong-1 unmanned space module
Robert Pearlman
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Posts: 27328
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 09-29-2011 06:51 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
China Manned Space Engineering Project release
Tiangong-1 rendezvous and docking mission

This mission will be implemented from the end of September to the middle of November, during which time the Tiangong-1 target vehicle and Shenzhou 8 spaceship will be launched in succession to carry out rendezvous and docking. The Long March 2F T1 rocket launching Tiangong-1 is scheduled to lift off during a launch window that extends from 21:16 to 21:31 (1316-1331 GMT; 8:16-8:31 a.m. CDT) on Sept. 29.

The main tasks of the Tiangong-1 spaceflight include: to provide a target vehicle for space rendezvous and docking experiments; to primarily establish a manned space test platform capable of long-term unmanned operation in space with temporary human attendance, and thus accumulate experiences for the development of a space station; to carry out space science experiments, space medical experiments and space technology experiments.

According to the schedule, Tiangong-1 will have two orbit maneuvers after launch before entering a 350 km (217 mile) near circular orbit and conducting in-orbit tests. Before the launch of Shenzhou 8, Tiangong-1 will descend to a 343 km (213 mile) near circular orbit waiting for rendezvous and docking.

Within two days of the launch of the unmanned Shenzhou 8, the first rendezvous and docking with Tiangong-1 will be performed and form a complex. After 12 days of flying joined as a complex, Shenzhou 8 will undock and perform a second rendezvous and docking. When that operation of the complex ends, the spaceship will return to the earth within one day.

Tiangong-1 will then ascend to an autonomous flight orbit and convert into long-term operation management mode waiting for the next rendezvous and docking.

Tiangong-1 is a newly developed spacecraft with a total length of 10.4 meters (34 feet), maximum diameter of 3.35 meters (11 feet), liftoff mass of 8.5 tons, and its designed life span in orbit is two years. It consists of an experiment module and a resource module.

The effective volume of the experiment module is about 15 cubic meters which can satisfy three astronauts to work and live in it. A passive docking mechanism is installed in its front so as to enable docking with the spaceship. The resource module provides power and energy for the spaceflight.

The Long March 2F T1 rocket used to launch Tiangong-1 is a modified Long March 2F rocket. The escape system has been removed, a new type of fairing has been adopted and the structure of the boosters has been upgraded to increase their lift capability. The height of the rocket is 52 meters (170.6 feet), liftoff mass 493 tons and launch capability 8.6 tons.

The implementation of a space rendezvous and docking mission is the basis and premise for the construction of a Chinese manned space station.

See here for discussion about China's Tiangong-1 umanned space module.

Robert Pearlman
Editor

Posts: 27328
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 09-29-2011 08:26 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Xinhua state news service
China's first space lab module Tiangong-1 blasts off


Credit: CCCTV

China's first space lab module Tiangong-1 blasted off at 9:16 p.m. Beijing Time (1316 GMT, 8:16 a.m. CDT) Thursday from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in northwest China's Gobi desert.

The unmanned module, carried by a Long March 2F T1 rocket, will test docking with an unmanned spacecraft later this year, paving the way for China to become the third country in the world to operate a permanent space station around 2020.


Credit: CCCTV

Tiangong-1 will orbit Earth for about one month to await Shenzhou 8's arrival. Once the two vehicles rendezvous, they will conduct China's first docking at an altitude of 340 kilometers (211 miles) above Earth's surface.

After two docking tests, Shenzhou 8 will depart and Tiangong-1 will await Shenzhou 9 and Shenzhou 10 in the next two years, according to the plan for China's manned space program.

See here for discussion about China's Tiangong-1 umanned space module.

Robert Pearlman
Editor

Posts: 27328
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 09-29-2011 02:00 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
collectSPACE
China's first space lab flying flags flown on U.S., Russian spacecraft

China launched its first space lab, the Tiangong-1 unmanned module, on a two-year mission to test technologies needed to build the nation's first space station. The 8.5-ton (17,000-pound) spacecraft also returned to space a commemorative cargo that was earlier flown aboard both American and Russian spacecraft to and from the International Space Station.

Robert Pearlman
Editor

Posts: 27328
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 10-07-2011 01:45 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Xinhua state news service
China's first space lab module in good condition

China's first space lab module is in good condition and all tests went on "smoothly" during the past week, according to a statement issued by the country's space project authorities Thursday.

Tiangong-1 was moved to the orbit of 362 kilometers (225 miles) high and had orbited the Earth for 109 times by 6:00 p.m. (5:00 a.m. CDT) Thursday, the statement said.

Tests on the module's remote control system, video and audio equipment, temperature and humidity sensors, docking facilities and other functions had been conducted successfully, it added.

See here for discussion about China's Tiangong-1 umanned space module.

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