JIUQUAN, September 29 (RIA Novosti)
- China confirms plans to build own orbital station
- China's fourth space center to be completed by 2015
- China to launch module for future space station in 2011
- China to begin construction of orbital space station in 2020
China launched its first space lab module Tiangong-1 from Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center on Thursday.
The Long March-2FT1 rocket carrying the module blasted off at 09:16 pm Beijing Time (13:16 GMT) and has already reached its designated orbit.
The module will test docking with a spacecraft by mid-November, paving the way for China to become the third country to operate a permanent space station around 2020, state news agency Xinhua said. The next two docking tests will take place in 2012.
The 8.5-tone module will remain in the orbit for two years, operating mainly in an unmanned regime. It is also capable of carrying up to three astronauts for 20 days.
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News that Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin would resign in order to run for the mayoral election in September came as quite a shock. Sobyanin’s political potential is fairly dubious, not to mention his approval ratings. He has not finished many of the projects he initiated and the electoral effect from these projects is expected to come a bit later than September 2013. Sobyanin’s opponents were not entirely unprepared for this blitzkrieg.