Wang Yaping all set to become first female Chinese astronaut to work on its unfinished space station

WION Web Team
Beijing, China Published: Oct 15, 2021, 03:27 PM(IST)

Chinese astronaut Wang Yaping Photograph:( AFP )

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Yaping will stay at the space station for six months along with Zhai Zhigang and Ye Guangfu

Wang Yaping will become the first female Chinese astronaut to work on its unfinished space station.

The 41-year-old will stay at the space station for six months along with Zhai Zhigang and Ye Guangfu.

She previously became China's second woman in space in 2013.

The three astronauts will travel in the Shenzhou-13 spacecraft will be launched at 00:23 a.m. Beijing time (1623 GMT) on October 16.

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Lin Xiqiang, the spokesman of the China Manned Space Programme, said ''Zhigang, 55, who hailed from China's first batch of astronaut trainees in the late 1990s, will be the mission commander for Shenzhou-13.''

"We will definitely encounter physical and psychological problems, as well as problems related to the equipment and facility," Zhai told reporters on Thursday.

"Whether we can complete this flight mission well, depends on our team, our tenacious will and the fighting spirit of our three crew members."

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The mission, known as Shenzhou-13, meaning "Divine Vessel" in Chinese, will be Zhai and Wang's second space mission and Ye's first.

China began construction of what will be its first permanent space station in April with the launch of Tianhe - the first and largest of the station's three modules.

Tianhe, slightly bigger than a city bus, will be the living quarters once the space station is completed.

China's heavily promoted space programme has already seen the country land a rover on Mars and send probes to the moon.

Beijing's desire for a human outpost of its own in Earth's orbit was fuelled by a US ban on its astronauts on the International Space Station.

The three-person crew on the previous Shenzhou-12 mission stayed in Tianhe for 90 days from June to September.

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