Saturday, June 16, 2012

3 Chinese Astronauts (incl.1st Female) Launch Into Orbit

China's first female astronaut enters space

Liu Yang and two male astronauts take off from Gobi desert on mission to help build space station within decade
Liu Yang, China's first female astronaut, waves during a launch ceremony
Liu Yang, China's first female astronaut, waves during a launch ceremony at Jiuquan Satellite Launch Centre. Photograph: Jason Lee/Reuters
China's first female astronaut has launched into space as part of a mission to build a fully operational space station within the decade.
A Long March rocket blasted off at 6.37pm from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Centre in the Gobi desert on Saturday, carrying the Shenzhou 9 spacecraft and three astronauts, including female fighter pilot Liu Yang.
Liu, 33, Jing Haipeng and Liu Wang are to dock with a prototype space lab launched last year in a key step toward building a larger, more permanent space station by 2020. They are to work there for about a week.



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