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China tests ‘Lunar Palace’ as it eyes moon mission

BEIJING Chinese students will live in a laboratory simulating a lunar-like environment for up to 200 days as Beijing prepares for its long-term goal of putting humans on the moon. Four postgraduate students from the capital's astronautics research university Beihang entered the 160-square-metre (1,720-square-foot) cabin -- dubbed the "Yuegong-1", or "Lunar Palace" -- on Wednesday, the official Xinhua news agency reported. The volunteers will live in the sealed lab to simulate a long-term, self-contained space mission…

China’s first cargo spacecraft docks with space lab

BEIJING: China's first cargo spacecraft, Tianzhou-1, successfully completed docking with an orbiting space lab on Saturday, the Beijing Aerospace Control Center said. The Tianzhou-1 was launched from the Wenchang Space Launch Center in Hainan province Thursday evening and began to approach the space lab, Tiangong-2, Saturday morning. It made first contact with the space lab at 12:16 pm on Saturday (04:16 GMT) and docking was completed at 12:23 pm. Cargo ships bring supplies and fuel into orbit, and the independent…

China launches first cargo spacecraft Tianzhou-1

WENCHANG, CHINA: A Chinese rocket successfully sent the country's first cargo spacecraft, Tianzhou-1, into space from the southern island province of Hainan on Thursday. Fuelled by liquid oxygen and kerosene, the Long March-7 Y2 carrier rocket blasted off from Hainan's Wenchang Space Launch Center at 7:41 pm (11:41 GMT). Hundreds of spectators who had been waiting to observe the launch since the afternoon cheered and clapped in the stands. Journalists and local hobbyists with long-range zoom lenses snapped…