News / Science & Technology

China Puts First Female Astronaut in Space

China's astronauts from left Liu Yang, Jing Haipeng and Liu Wang salute before they depart for the Shenzhou 9 spacecraft rocket launch pad at the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in Jiuquan, China, Saturday, June 16, 2012.China's astronauts from left Liu Yang, Jing Haipeng and Liu Wang salute before they depart for the Shenzhou 9 spacecraft rocket launch pad at the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in Jiuquan, China, Saturday, June 16, 2012.
x
China's astronauts from left Liu Yang, Jing Haipeng and Liu Wang salute before they depart for the Shenzhou 9 spacecraft rocket launch pad at the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in Jiuquan, China, Saturday, June 16, 2012.
China's astronauts from left Liu Yang, Jing Haipeng and Liu Wang salute before they depart for the Shenzhou 9 spacecraft rocket launch pad at the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in Jiuquan, China, Saturday, June 16, 2012.
Stephanie Ho
BEIJING - China successfully launched its first woman astronaut into orbit on a mission that marks an important step in the country's plans to build a permanent space station.

The Shenzhou 9 spacecraft blasted into space Saturday under clear skies at the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in western Gansu province.

The spacecraft carries a crew of three astronauts, including China's first female in space, Liu Yang. The Shenzhou 9 is set to dock with another spacecraft, Tiangong 1, which is in orbit more than 300 kilometers above Earth.

One of the Chinese government's highest-ranking female officials, State Councilor Liu Yandong, read a letter of congratulations from Chinese President Hu Jintao, who is on a visit to Denmark. Speaking through an interpreter, she said Hu sees the docking mission as a “big milestone” for China.

“I'd like all of you to continue your spirit of hard work and achieve complete success in our first manned space docking mission, and to create new achievements for our manned space program,” said Liu.

China's top legislator, Wu Bangguo, presided over a mission send-off ceremony, and was shown on television monitoring events from the control room.

During the launch video monitors showed live images of the three-person crew, which appeared to be calm while reading handbooks.

Astronaut Liu Wang will be mainly in charge of a manual docking of the Shenzhou-9 with the Tiangong-1, a task that will be performed in coming days. Speaking Friday, he said this will be very difficult.

He said the manual rendezvous requires a lot of technology and skills, so he has rehearsed the maneuver more than 1,500 times.

Mission commander Jing Haipeng said he is still excited even though this is his third time in space.

He added that with China's growing space industry, he expects that in the future, there will be many more astronauts who will make multiple missions.

The crew is expected to spend 13 days in space, conducting scientific, medical and technological experiments.

You May Like

Ebola Death Toll Nears 5,000 as Virus Advances

West Africa bears heaviest burden; Mali toddler’s death raises new fears More

Jordan’s Battle With Islamic State Militants Carries Domestic Risks

Despite Western concerns that IS militants are preparing a Jordanian offensive, analysts call the kingdom's solid intel a strong deterrent More

Asian-Americans Assume Office in Record Numbers

Steadily deepening engagement in local politics pays off for politicians like Chinese-American Judy Chu More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: riano baggy from: indonesia
June 19, 2012 5:41 AM
now the dragon go to sky before to make big waves in the oceans,
i hope the dragon not play make typhoon in the sky..

In Response

by: gao from: China
June 21, 2012 12:33 PM
How do you do ! Oh , don't worry too much , China's development will bring more opportunities and benefits to other countries' development .Our chairman Hu has announced my country's policys to others many times. China , under the leadership of the Communist party , was quite different from the fascist. To build a cooperative and peaceful and rich world . That's all the people 's dream and goal in the world extremely the Chinese. Right? His performance has proved this so far. For instance, China's help to the Africa and in many other countries.


by: Cả Thộn from: Hà Nội
June 18, 2012 5:18 PM
Good for them. Too busy in space, Chinese have no time to bother fishermen down South China Sea and Philipinos.

In Response

by: zhangjie from: china
June 19, 2012 10:47 PM
No,we have not forgotten


by: Jonathan Huang from: canada
June 17, 2012 12:29 AM
Congratulations, China! I am so proud not only because The first Chinese women goes to the out space but also because China did it when US and Europe try to keep China out of space technologies and didn't allow China to participate the international space station program. Now we are going to have our own space station. Excellent! we are not just second biggest economy and also a technological advanced country!

In Response

by: Ada from: China
June 19, 2012 11:40 AM
I really appreciate what you said


by: Ai Jun from: Chengdu,China
June 16, 2012 11:40 PM
Correction-3rd paragraph from the bottom, Jing Haipeng -"this is his third time in space". Correct information: this is the 2nd time in space for him. Source-http://edu.people.com.cn/GB/1053/18207461.html

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Talks to Resume on Winter Gas for Ukrainei
X
Al Pessin
October 25, 2014 4:21 PM
Ukrainian and Russian officials will meet again next week in an effort to settle their dispute over natural gas supplies that threatens to leave Ukraine short of heating fuel for the coming winter. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London the dispute is complex, and has both economic and geopolitical dimensions.
Video

Video Talks to Resume on Winter Gas for Ukraine

Ukrainian and Russian officials will meet again next week in an effort to settle their dispute over natural gas supplies that threatens to leave Ukraine short of heating fuel for the coming winter. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London the dispute is complex, and has both economic and geopolitical dimensions.
Video

Video Smugglers Offer Cheap Passage From Turkey to Syria

Smugglers in Turkey offer a relatively cheap passage across the border into Syria. Ankara has stepped up efforts to stem the flow of foreign fighters who want to join Islamic State militants fighting for control of the Syrian border city of Kobani. But porous borders and border guards who can be bribed make illegal border crossings quite easy. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Comanche Chief Quanah Parker’s Century-Old House Falling Apart

One of the most fascinating people in U.S. history was Quanah Parker, the last chief of the American Indian tribe, the Comanche. He was the son of a Comanche warrior and a white woman who had been captured by the Indians. Parker was a fierce warrior until 1875 when he led his people to Fort Sill, Oklahoma, and took on a new, peaceful life. As VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Cache, Oklahoma, Quanah’s image remains strong among his people, but part of his heritage is in danger of disappearing.
Video

Video China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Law

China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rules

European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video Kobani Refugees Welcome, Turkey Criticizes, US Airdrop

Residents of Kobani in northern Syria have welcomed the airdrop of weapons, ammunition and medicine to Kurdish militia who are resisting the seizure of their city by Islamic State militants. The Turkish government, however, has criticized the operation. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from southeastern Turkey, across the border from Kobani.
Video

Video US ‘Death Cafes’ Put Focus on the Finale

In contemporary America, death usually is a topic to be avoided. But the growing “death café” movement encourages people to discuss their fears and desires about their final moments. VOA’s Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Ebola Orphanage Opens in Sierra Leone

Sierra Leone's first Ebola orphanage has opened in the Kailahun district. Hundreds of children orphaned since the beginning of the Ebola outbreak face stigma and rejection with nobody to care for them. Adam Bailes reports for VOA about a new interim care center that's aimed at helping the growing number of children affected by Ebola.

All About America

AppleAndroid