In this combo photo, astronauts Zhai Zhigang, Wang Yaping and Ye Guangfu (from L to R) are out of the return capsule of the Shenzhou-13 spaceship at the Dongfeng landing site in north China's Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region on April 16, 2022. (Xinhua)
Three astronauts from the Shenzhou-13 crewed mission were awarded medals for their service to China's space endeavors on Tuesday.
Zhai Zhigang, the mission commander, and Wang Yaping, the first female on China's space station, were honored with second-class aerospace achievement medals, while Ye Guangfu received a third-class medal and the honorary title "heroic astronaut."
The awards were given by the Communist Party of China Central Committee, the State Council and the Central Military Commission.
The Shenzhou-13 mission was the second space mission for Zhai, who served as commander for the second time during the mission. He has performed extravehicular activities (EVAs) on three occasions, the most by any Chinese astronaut so far. The flight was Wang's second space mission and Ye's first.
Launched on Oct. 16, 2021, the Shenzhou-13 spaceship sent the trio to China's space station core module Tianhe, where they lived and worked for six months, the longest stay in space by Chinese astronauts on a single mission.
They performed EVAs twice and delivered two live classes from the space station during their stay. The mission marks China's completion of the verification of key technologies used on the space station.