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Tiangong-2 to hit orbit by 2016, to dock with spaceships  

天宫二号将于2016年发射 与神舟载人飞船实施对接

2014-09-26 15:37 Ecns.cn Web Editor: Si Huan

Beijing (CNS) -- Tiangong-2, China's second space lab, is scheduled for launch by 2016, the country's manned space engineering office revealed on Friday.

Two spacecraft, the manned Shenzhou-11 and cargo ship Tianzhou-1, will subsequently dock with the lab.

Wang Zhaoyang, director of the manned space engineering office, said development and production of Tiangong-2, Tianzhou-1, Shenzhou-11 and the Long March 2F carrier has entered a key stage.

A new launch center in Hainan province is almost complete, he added.

China launched its first space lab, Tiangong-1 in September 2011. It has completed six dockings with spacecraft to date. Besides, in June 2013, Shenzhou-10 also docked with it, with three astronauts delivering a physics lesson onboard the space lab.

Tiangong-1, designed to last two years in orbit, is still in good shape. Scientists are keeping a close eye on the craft and trying their best to prolong its in-orbit lifespan.

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