China unveils first astronaut team

According to the news of the Chinese news agency Xinhua, Yang Livey, Vice President of the China Manned Space Program Agency (CMSA), announced to the public the 3-person team that will be sent to orbit with the “Shincou-12” space mission.

It is reported that astronauts Nie Haishing, Liu Boming and Tang Hongbo will take part in the first manned expedition to the space station.

Nie, who will take command of the expedition, previously took part in “Shincou-6”, which traversed the earth’s orbit in 2005, and “Shincou-10”, which anchored the experimental space laboratory module Tiengong-1 in 2013.

Nie was given the title of “hero astronaut” after his second space mission.

Astronaut Liu previously took part in the “Shincou-7” mission, where Chinese astronauts made the first spacewalk.

Tang, who will go on a space mission for the first time, joined the second-generation group of Chinese astronauts in 2010.

Astronauts Cai Cigang, Vang Yaping, and Yi Guangfu were designated as the backup crew for the expedition.

The Sencou-12 space shuttle will be launched tomorrow at 09:22 local time.

China’s plan to build a space station

China is working to establish its own space station by 2022, as the USA prohibits cooperation in the field of space exploration and prevents its participation in the International Space Station (ISS) program.

Consisting of a core module, two laboratory modules and a space telescope, the station will, when completed, be approximately the same size as Russia’s now defunct Mir Space Station.

China launched the core module of the station, called Tienhi (Heavenly Harmony), on April 29. Then, on 29 May, a resupply voyage was organized with the cargo shuttle Tiencou-2 (Skyship-2) to the station.

The core module and laboratory modules named “Vintien” (Seeking the Sky) and “Mingtien” (Dreaming the Sky) will also be sent into space in 2022.

After the main skeleton is formed, the space telescope called “Shuntien” (Wandering the Sky) will be added to the station as a separate module in the following years.

Four manned flights and four cargo flights are planned for the station to be completed by 2022.