Launch from Jiuquan Satellite Launching Center.
docked with space station
on November 29, 2022
and became for a few days crew members of
With undocking of Shenzhou-14
on December 04, 2022 the three astronauts became
space station (English: Heavenly Palace) can accommodate three
astronauts under normal circumstances and up to six during a crew
change. The station will be T-shaped with the core module in the middle
and a laboratory capsule on each side. Each of the modules will weigh
more than 20 tons, with a total mass of the station of about 66 tons.
The space station, which is expected to be completed in 2022, is
expected to operate for more than 10 years in low-earth orbit at an
altitude of 340 km to 450 km.
The station's core module, named Tianhe
(English: Heavenly Harmony), has a total length of 16.6 meters, a
maximum diameter of 4.2 meters and a launch mass of 22.5 tons and is
currently the largest spacecraft developed by China. The
core module will be the management and control center and the main
living room of the crew, and will support some science and technology
experiments. The living space in the core module is approx. 50 cubic
meters. In combination with the two laboratory capsules, the total
living space could be up to 110 cubic meters, according to the China
Academy of Space Technology (CAST). The core module has two berth
connections connected to the two laboratory capsules and three docking
connections for the spaceship, cargo and other crew vehicles. It also
has an exit for astronauts to conduct extravehicular activities.
The first laboratory capsule, named Wentian
Inquiry), is mainly used for scientific and technological experiments,
as well as for work and living spaces and emergency shelters. This
capsule is equipped with a special airlock chamber to support
extravehicular activities and a small mechanical arm for the automatic
installation and operation of instruments on the shell of the space
The second laboratory capsule, named Mengtian
Heavenly Dream), has similar functions to the first laboratory capsule.
It is equipped with a special airlock chamber that supports the entry
and exit of cargo and instruments with the help of astronauts and
The Long March-7 rocket and the Tianzhou
(English: Sky Ship) cargo spaceship are used to transport materials,
propellants and instruments for the station.
The Long March-5B rocket launched the core module and laboratory
capsules, as well as a capsule with a 2-meter caliber optical telescope,
which will fly in the same orbit as the space station on April 29, 2021
The telescope capsule, named Xuntian
(English: Sky Survey), is
designed to provide observational data for astronomical and physical
studies to enable scientists to better understand the universe. It can
observe over 40 percent of the sky during its expected 10 years of
operation. The capsule can dock with the space station for maintenance