China launches Tianhe module, start of ambitious two-year station construction effort

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      soryang
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      by William Graham & Chris Gebhardt April 28, 2021

      China launched a Chang Zheng 5B rocket with the Tianhe station core module to low Earth orbit, marking the start of an ambitious two year construction effort of the nation’s new multi-module space station.

      Liftoff of the historic mission occurred at 23:18 EDT on Wednesday, 28 April — which was 03:18 UTC on Thursday, 29 April — from the Wenchang Spacecraft Launch Site on Hainan Province island, People’s Republic of China.

      Tianhe seeks “harmony of the heavens”

      Launch of the Tianhe module marks a transition from China’s original human spaceflight goals to the start of a permanent presence in space. China is effectively banned from participation in the International Space Station program due to geopolitical strife with the United States.

      https://www.nasaspaceflight.com/2021/04/china-station-construction-begins/

      Just saw this launch live on CGTN. 22 ton payload.

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