Tiangong-1

Last updated

Tiangong-1
天宫一号目标飞行器
Model of the Chinese Tiangong Shenzhou.jpg
Model of Tiangong space lab with attached Shenzhou crewed spacecraft.
Tiangong 1 drawing (cropped).png
Plan diagram of Tiangong-1 with solar panels extended
Station statistics
COSPAR ID 2011-053A
SATCAT no. 37820
Launch 29 September 2011,
13:16:03.507 UTC [1] [2]
Carrier rocket Long March 2F/G
Launch pad Jiuquan, LA-4/SLS-1
Reentry 2 April 2018, 00:16 UTC [3] [4]
2 April 2018 00:15 UTC (China Manned Space Engineering Office) [5]
Mission statusDeorbited [4]
Length10.4 m (34 ft)
Diameter3.35 m (11.0 ft)
Pressurised volume 15 m3 (530 cu ft) [6]
Days occupied20 days, 18.5 hours
(Hatch open to hatch closed) [7]
Tiangong-1
Simplified Chinese 天宫一号
Traditional Chinese 天宮一號
Literal meaningCelestial Palace-1 or Heavenly Palace-1
Map showing the probability of re-entry of Tiangong 1 by latitude. Latitudes shaded red were most likely; latitudes shaded green were least likely. Areas outside possible re-entry latitudes are not pictured. Tiangong-1 Reentry Map.png
Map showing the probability of re-entry of Tiangong 1 by latitude. Latitudes shaded red were most likely; latitudes shaded green were least likely. Areas outside possible re-entry latitudes are not pictured.

The orbit of Tiangong-1 was decaying gradually, and the space laboratory was predicted to be destroyed upon re-entry into Earth's atmosphere. [72] [73] [74]

At the request of China and the United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA), the Inter-Agency Space Debris Coordination Committee (IADC), led by the European Space Agency (ESA), conducted an international campaign to monitor the re-entry of Tiangong-1. ESA's Space Debris Office in Darmstadt, Germany hosted and administered the campaign, with participation from other space agencies and organizations including the China National Space Administration (CNSA), the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), the Korea Aerospace Research Institute (KARI), and Roscosmos of Russia. [75] The IADC predicted that Tiangong-1 would break up during re-entry, but that parts of the station would survive and fall to the Earth's surface, potentially falling across an area thousands of kilometres long and tens of kilometres wide. However, because most of the re-entry area was ocean or uninhabited land, the IADC stated that the odds of a person being hit by falling debris to be "10 million times smaller than the yearly chance of being hit by lightning". [71] The IADC's final prediction before re-entry was that Tiangong-1 would re-enter at around 01:00 UTC on 2 April 2018, plus or minus 2 hours, falling somewhere on Earth between 42.8° North and 42.8° South latitudes, [76] [77] with the most likely re-entry sites being at the north and south extremes of that range. This is because the station's high-inclination orbit had the smallest north-south speed at the extreme latitudes, and the greatest north-south speed near the equator. [71]

Independently, the non-profit Aerospace Corporation's Center for Orbital and Re-entry Debris Studies (CORDS) predicted that Tiangong-1 would most likely re-enter the atmosphere around 00:30 UTC on 2 April 2018, plus or minus 1.7 hours. CORDS scientists also predicted that it would re-enter somewhere between the 42.7° North and 42.7° South latitudes, a range that covered two-thirds of the Earth's surface, with a high likelihood of an ocean landing of whatever did not burn up during re-entry. [78] They predicted that if any parts of the station survived re-entry, the small amount of debris would impact the ground over an area a few hundred square kilometers in size. [79] The final prediction of likely areas for debris impact covered southern South America, Africa, the Middle East, and central Asia. [79] [80] However, even in those high-probability areas, they still estimated the odds of a specific person being hit by debris to be "about one million times smaller than the odds of winning the Powerball jackpot". [81]

Tiangong-1 reentered the Earth's atmosphere at approximately 00:16 UTC on 2 April 2018 over the South Pacific Ocean at 24°30′S151°06′W / 24.5°S 151.1°W / -24.5; -151.1 . [4] [79] According to Chinese state news agency Xinhua, the station mostly burnt up upon re-entry. [82] A fisherman from the nearby island of Maupiti was able to witness the event. [83] It was the largest spacecraft to re-enter the atmosphere since Fobos-Grunt in January 2012. [71] This was about 3,600 km (1,900 nmi) from Point Nemo, a location often used as a spacecraft cemetery to crash defunct satellites. [84] As the spacecraft made an uncontrolled reentry, this was an unintended coincidence.

Program developments

Tiangong-1 was designed as a test bed for key technologies later used on another test station called Tiangong-2, which was launched on 15 September 2016. [85] Both experimental space stations are short-lived and meant to test technologies and systems for a permanent future space station called Chinese large modular space station, which is planned to be assembled from 2019 to 2022. [86]

The design of Tianzhou, an automated cargo spacecraft intended to resupply the Chinese large modular space station, is based on Tiangong-1. [14] [87]

See also

Related Research Articles

Human spaceflight Space travel by humans

Human spaceflight is spaceflight with a crew or passengers aboard a spacecraft, the spacecraft being operated directly by the onboard human crew. Spacecraft can also be remotely operated from ground stations on Earth, or autonomously, without any direct human involvement. People trained for spaceflight are called astronauts, cosmonauts, or taikonauts; and non-professionals are referred to as spaceflight participants.

Space station Habitable artificial satellite

A space station, also known as an orbital station or an orbital space station, is a spacecraft capable of supporting a human crew in orbit for an extended period of time, and is therefore a type of space habitat. It lacks major propulsion or landing systems. Stations must have docking ports to allow other spacecraft to dock to transfer crew and supplies.

Shenzhou (spacecraft) Spacecraft from China, based on the Soyuz

Shenzhou is a spacecraft developed and operated by China to support its crewed spaceflight program, China Manned Space Program. Its design resembles the Russian Soyuz spacecraft, but it is larger in size. The first launch was on 19 November 1999 and the first crewed launch was on 15 October 2003. In March 2005, an asteroid was named 8256 Shenzhou in honour of the spacecraft.

The space program of the People's Republic of China is directed by the China National Space Administration (CNSA). Its technological roots can be traced back to the late 1950s, when China began a ballistic missile program in response to perceived American threats. However, the first Chinese crewed space program only began several decades later, when an accelerated program of technological development culminated in Yang Liwei's successful 2003 flight aboard Shenzhou 5. This achievement made China the third country to independently send humans into space. Plans currently include a permanent Chinese space station by the end of 2022, crewed expeditions to the Moon and interplanetary missions to explore the Solar System and beyond.

Shenzhou 4 – launched on December 29, 2002 – was the fourth uncrewed launch of the Chinese Shenzhou spacecraft. Two dummy astronauts were used to test the life support systems.

Jing Haipeng

Jing Haipeng is a major general of the People's Liberation Army Ground Force (PLAGF) in active service as a vice-commander of the 82nd Group Army. A fighter pilot in the PLA Air Force (PLAAF), he was selected to be a PLA Astronaut Corps (PLAAC) astronaut in 1998. He is the first Chinese astronaut to have flown on three missions.

Tiangong program Space station program of the Peoples Republic of China

Tiangong is China's program to create a modular space station, comparable to Mir. This program is independent and unconnected to any other international space-active countries. The program is part of the China Manned Space Program began in 1992. The core module, the Tianhe was finally launched on 29 April 2021 marking the start of the Tiangong Space program deployment.

Tiangong space station Chinese space station in low Earth orbit

Tiangong, officially the Tiangong space station, is a space station being constructed by China in low Earth orbit between 340 and 450 km above the surface. Being China's first long-term space station, it is the goal of the "Third Step" of the China Manned Space Program. Once completed, the Tiangong Space Station will have a mass between 80 and 100 t, roughly one-fifth the mass of the International Space Station and about the size of the decommissioned Russian Mir space station but with more advanced technologies.

Shenzhou 8 Eighth launch of the Shenzhou spacecraft

Shenzhou 8 was an uncrewed flight of China's Shenzhou program, launched on 31 October 2011 UTC, or 1 November 2011 in China, by a Long March 2F rocket which lifted off from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center.

Shenzhou 9 2012 Chinese manned spaceflight

Shenzhou 9 was the fourth crewed spacecraft flight of China's Shenzhou program, launched at 18:37:24 CST, 16 June 2012. Shenzhou 9 was the second spacecraft and first crewed spacecraft to dock with the Tiangong-1 space station, which took place on 18 June. The Shenzhou 9 spacecraft landed at 10:01:16 CST on 29 June in the Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region. The mission's crew included the first Chinese female astronaut, Liu Yang. The next mission was Shenzhou 10, which launched on 11 June 2013.

Shenzhou 10

Shenzhou 10 was a crewed spaceflight of China's Shenzhou program that was launched on 11 June 2013. It was China's fifth crewed space mission. The mission had a crew of three astronauts: Nie Haisheng, who was mission commander and previously flew on Shenzhou 6; Zhang Xiaoguang, a former PLAAF squadron commander who conducted the rendezvous and docking; and Wang Yaping, the second Chinese female astronaut. The Shenzhou spacecraft docked with the Tiangong-1 trial space laboratory module on 13 June, and the astronauts performed physical, technological, and scientific experiments while on board. Shenzhou 10 was the final mission to Tiangong-1 in this portion of the Tiangong program. On 26 June 2013, after a series of successful docking tests, Shenzhou 10 returned to Earth.

China Manned Space Program

The China Manned Space Program, also known as Project 921, is a space program developed by China and run by the China Manned Space Agency (CMSA), designed to develop and enhance human spaceflight capabilities for China. It was approved on 21 September 1992 and been in operation ever since.

Several Asian national space programs are attempting to achieve the scientific and technological advancements necessary for regular spaceflight, as well as to reap the strategic and economic benefits of space capability. This is sometimes referred to as the Asian space race in popular media, an allusion to the Cold-War-era Space Race between the United States and the Soviet Union.

Tiangong-2 Chinese space laboratory

Tiangong-2 was a Chinese space laboratory and part of the Project 921-2 space station program. Tiangong-2 was launched on 15 September 2016. It was deorbited as planned on 19 July 2019.

<i>Tianhe</i> core module Component of Chinas space station

Tianhe, officially the Tianhe core module, is the first module to launch of the Tiangong space station. It was launched into orbit on 29 April 2021, as the first launch of the final phase of Tiangong program, part of the China Manned Space Program.

Shenzhou 11

Shenzhou 11 was a crewed spaceflight of the Shenzhou program of China, launched on 17 October 2016 from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center. It was China's sixth crewed space mission, at 33 days, it was the longest until the follow up Shenzhou 12 mission which lasted 3 months. Two days after launch, it docked with the Tiangong-2 space laboratory, which had been launched on 15 September 2016.

Shenzhou 13 Manned spaceflight of the Shenzhou program of China

Shenzhou 13 is the eighth crewed Chinese spaceflight and the thirteenth flight of the Shenzhou program. The spacecraft carried three People's Liberation Army Astronaut Corps (PLAAC) taikonauts on the second flight to the Tianhe core module, the first module of the Tiangong space station. The launch of the three-person crew with a Long March-2F launch vehicle from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center took place on October 15, 2021 at 16:23 UTC, and the return is planned for spring 2022.

Shenzhou 12 2021 Chinese crewed spaceflight

Shenzhou 12 was a Chinese spaceflight launched on 17 June 2021. The flight marked the seventh crewed Chinese spaceflight and the twelfth flight of the Shenzhou program. The spacecraft carried three members of the People's Liberation Army Astronaut Corps (PLAAC) on the first flight to the Tianhe core module, the first module of the Tiangong space station.

References

  1. 1 2 "China to launch unmanned space module by September 30". SpaceDaily.com. Retrieved 29 September 2011.
  2. "Insider: Tiangong 1 to launch in early September". Beijing Times. 24 August 2011. Retrieved 1 September 2011.
  3. 1 2 "Tracking and Impact Prediction" . space-track.org. JFSCC/J3. 1 April 2018. Retrieved 1 April 2018.
  4. 1 2 3 4 5 Chiles, Cody (1 April 2018). "JFSCC tracks Tiangong-1's reentry over the Pacific Ocean". vandenberg.af.mil (Press release). Retrieved 3 April 2018. U.S. Strategic Command's (USSTRATCOM) Joint Force Space Component Command (JFSCC), through the Joint Space Operations Center (JSpOC), confirmed Tiangong-1 reentered the Earth's atmosphere over the southern Pacific Ocean at approximately 17:16 (PST) 1 April 2018.PD-icon.svgThis article incorporates text from this source, which is in the public domain .
  5. 1 2 3 "Tiangong-1 reenters the atmosphere". cmse.gov.cn. China Manned Space. 2 April 2018. Retrieved 2 April 2018.
  6. 1 2 3 Xin, Dingding (27 September 2011). "Spacecraft ready to go on mission". China Daily. Retrieved 27 September 2011.
  7. Jonathan McDowell (4 April 2018). "Tiangong 1 statistic discussions". Twitter.
  8. "China launches Tiangong-1 to mark next human space flight milestone". NASASpaceFlight.com. 28 September 2011. Retrieved 22 October 2011.
  9. 1 2 David, Leonard (11 March 2011). "China Details Ambitious Space Station Goals". Space.com. Retrieved 4 November 2013. China is ready to carry out a multiphase construction program that leads to a large space station around 2020. As a prelude to building that facility, China is set to loft the Tiangong-1 module this year as a platform to help master key rendezvous and docking technologies.
  10. David, Leonard (28 March 2018). "China's Doomed Space Station Did Some Science Work, Too". Space.com.
  11. 1 2 3 "Spacecraft Tiangong-1 launch delayed". China Daily. 2 September 2011. Retrieved 14 September 2011.
  12. "China to launch space station by 2023". BBC News. 26 September 2013. Retrieved 1 October 2013.
  13. "China to launch module for future space station" PhysOrg 28 September 2011 Retrieved 10 March 2013
  14. 1 2 "China to launch Tiangong-2 and cargo spacecraft in 2015". GB Times. 13 June 2013. Retrieved 16 June 2013.
  15. 1 2 "Tiangong-1: Defunct China space lab comes down over South Pacific". BBC News. 1 April 2018. Retrieved 1 April 2018.
  16. 1 2 Chang, Kenneth (1 April 2018). "China's Tiangong-1 Space Station Has Fallen Back to Earth Over the Pacific". The New York Times. Retrieved 1 April 2018.
  17. 1 2 "Chinese spacecraft dock in orbit" BBC News 2 November 2011 Retrieved 15 June 2013
  18. 1 2 "China completes second space docking" Agence France Presse via Google 14 November 2011 Retrieved 15 November 2011
  19. 1 2 "China launches space mission with first woman astronaut". BBC News. 16 June 2012. Retrieved 4 November 2013.
  20. 1 2 3 "Shenzhou-9 docks with Tiangong-1" BBC 18 June 2012 Retrieved 4 November 2013.
  21. 1 2 "China to carry out crewed space flight". BBC News. 9 June 2012. Retrieved 26 October 2012.
  22. 1 2 "China to launch next crewed spaceship in 2013". BBC News. 10 November 2012. Retrieved 4 November 2013.
  23. 1 2 3 4 "Shenzhou-10: China launches next crewed space mission". BBC News. 11 June 2013. Retrieved 11 June 2013.
  24. 1 2 "Shenzhou-10: Chinese capsule docks with space laboratory". BBC News. 13 June 2013. Retrieved 13 June 2013.
  25. 1 2 "China sends its first female astronaut into space" The Daily Telegraph 16 June 2012 Retrieved 4 November 2013
  26. 1 2 "天宫一号正式终止数据服务 全面完成各项在轨试验任务-新华网" (in Chinese). Xinhua News Agency. Retrieved 9 April 2016.
  27. 1 2 "China's 1st space lab Tiangong-1 ends data service". SpaceDaily. 23 March 2016. Retrieved 29 March 2018.
  28. 1 2 Jones, Morris (30 March 2016). "Has Tiangong 1 gone rogue". Space Daily. Retrieved 22 September 2016.
  29. "China's Tiangong-1 to fall to Earth late 2017" Xinhua News Agency 14 September 2016 Retrieved 22 September 2016
  30. Guarino, Bin (21 September 2016). "Out of control? China's Tiangong 1 space station will fall to Earth – somewhere – in 2017". The Washington Post. Retrieved 22 September 2016.
  31. 天宫一号"空间站已进入初样研制阶段(图) (in Chinese). CCTV. 25 January 2009. Retrieved 26 July 2013.
  32. 我国将于2010年-2011年发射小型空间站 (in Chinese). Sina.com. 29 September 2008. Retrieved 26 July 2013.
  33. "Unmanned space module to be launched in 2010, await space docking". Xinhuanet. 28 February 2009. Archived from the original on 8 November 2012. Retrieved 30 September 2011.
  34. "Malfunction at devices connection blamed for orbiter launch failure". Xinhua News Agency. 6 September 2011. Retrieved 9 August 2015.
  35. "China Accelerates Manned Space Program with Tiangong Docking Module and Advanced Shenzhou" AmericaSpace 23 September 2011 Retrieved 3 November 2011
  36. "China Launches Tiangong-1 Space Lab" InterSpace News 29 September 2011 Retrieved 3 November 2011
  37. 1 2 3 "Living on Tiangong" SpaceDaily 25 October 2011 Retrieved 29 October 2011
  38. 1 2 Barbosa, Rui (28 September 2011). "China launches TianGong-1 to mark next human space flight milestone". NASASpaceFlight.com. Retrieved 5 January 2013.
  39. Moskowitz, Clara (14 September 2011) "China's space dreams ride on robotic docking success" NBC News Retrieved 30 September 2011
  40. "China Readies for Own Space Station in Test Launch" Archived 25 September 2011 at the Wayback Machine International Business Times 21 September 2011 Retrieved 30 September 2011
  41. "SPACE: 'Heavenly Palace' heads into space" Business Day 21 September 2011 Retrieved 30 September 2011
  42. "China set to 'Leap Forward in Space' as Tiangong 1 Rolls to Launch Pad" Universe Today 26 September 2011 Retrieved 30 September 2011
  43. Murray, Warren (30 September 2011). "Rocket's red glaring error: China sets space launch to America the Beautiful". The Guardian. Retrieved 30 September 2011.
  44. 1 2 "天宫一号成功完成二次变轨" (in Chinese) People's Daily 1 October 2011 Retrieved 21 November 2011
  45. "Tiangong 1 releases first photo in space" People's Daily 12 October 2011 Retrieved 18 October 2011
  46. "2nd docking of Tiangong-1 and Shenzhou-8 on schedule" Archived 10 November 2011 at the Wayback Machine Xinhua 7 November 2011 Retrieved 15 June 2013
  47. "Chinese spacecraft Shenzhou-8 disengages from space lab module Tiangong-1" Xinhua 14 November 2011 Retrieved 15 June 2013
  48. "Shenzhou 8 Docking Mission Major Step To Space Station, China Says" HuffPost 18 November 2011 Retrieved 4 November 2013
  49. "China plans major effort in pursuing manned space technology" SpaceDaily 22 November 2011 Retrieved 23 November 2011
  50. "Tiangong-1 orbiter starts planned cabin checks against toxic gas" SpaceDaily 19 December 2011
  51. "US 'space warplane' may be spying on Chinese spacelab" The Register 6 January 2012 Retrieved 13 January 2012
  52. "Expert: U. S. Secret Space Plane Not Likely "Spying" on China Module" Archived 11 January 2012 at the Wayback Machine International Business Times 9 January 2012 Retrieved 13 January 2012
  53. "Shenzhou-9 may take female astronaut to space" SpaceDaily 14 March 2012 Retrieved 24 March 2012
  54. "Shenzhou-9 spacecraft delivered to launch center" China Daily 9 April 2012 Retrieved 24 April 2012
  55. "Launch preps begin for next Chinese human spaceflight". Spaceflight Now. 14 May 2012. Retrieved 24 May 2012.
  56. "Chinese large modular space station creas". bbc.co.uk. 15 June 2012. Archived from the original on 15 June 2012. Retrieved 4 November 2013. Alt URL
  57. "China successfully completes space docking". China Daily. 19 June 2012. Archived from the original on 3 March 2016. Retrieved 4 November 2013.
  58. "Video: China's first manual space docking" People's Daily 24 June 2012 Retrieved 4 November 2013
  59. "China's Shenzhou 9 spacecraft returns to earth". The Guardian. 29 June 2012. Retrieved 4 November 2013.
  60. "Astronauts share feelings with HK students". China Daily. 13 August 2012. Retrieved 1 September 2012.
  61. "Tiangong 1 Parked And Waiting As Shenzhou 10 Mission Prep Continues". SpaceDaily. 5 November 2012. Retrieved 9 November 2012.
  62. "Reshuffle for Tiangong". SpaceDaily. 23 January 2013. Retrieved 12 February 2013.
  63. 1 2 "Astronauts complete first maintenance on Tiangong-1". ChinaDaily. 15 June 2013. Retrieved 19 June 2013.
  64. "China gives first lecture from space". BBC News. 20 June 2013. Retrieved 21 June 2013.
  65. "China poised for bigger strides in space exploration: Xi Jinping". Zee News. 24 June 2013. Retrieved 26 June 2013.
  66. "China's Shenzhou-10 mission successful". Xinhua News Agency. 26 June 2013. Retrieved 26 June 2013.
  67. "China launches Shenzhou-10 manned space mission". The Telegraph. 11 June 2013. Archived from the original on 18 June 2013. Retrieved 11 June 2013.
  68. SCIO briefing on China's Tiangong-2 and Shenzhou 11 manned space mission China.org.cn 19 November 2016
  69. "Note verbale dated 4 May 2017 from the Permanent mission of China to the United Nations (Vienna) addressed to the Secretary-General" (PDF). UN Office for Outer Space Affairs. 4 May 2017.
  70. 1 2 "Tiangong-1 Orbital Status". Official Website of China Manned Space. China Manned Space Engineering Office. 1 April 2018. Retrieved 1 April 2018.
  71. 1 2 3 4 "Tiangong-1 frequently asked questions". Rocket Science Blog. European Space Agency. 16 January 2018. Retrieved 11 March 2018.
  72. David, Leonard (10 June 2016). "When Will China's 'Heavenly Palace' Space Lab Fall Back to Earth?". SPACE.com. Retrieved 15 July 2016.
  73. Howell, Elizabeth (13 July 2016). "Tiangong-1: China". SPACE.com. Retrieved 15 July 2016.
  74. Malkin, Bonnie (6 March 2018). "China's Tiangong-1 space station will crash to Earth within weeks". The Guardian. Archived from the original on 6 March 2018. Retrieved 6 March 2018.
  75. "ESA joins re-entry campaign" (Press release). European Space Agency. 6 November 2017. Retrieved 15 March 2018.
  76. "Tiangong-1 Reentry Updates". blogs.esa.int. European Space Agency. 1 April 2018. Retrieved 1 April 2018.
  77. "Monitoring (almost) complete". Rocket Science Blog. European Space Agency. 1 April 2018. Retrieved 1 April 2018.
  78. Moser, Dave (3 January 2018). "China's out-of-control space station may crash to Earth in 2 months". Business Insider. Retrieved 3 January 2018.
  79. 1 2 3 "Tiangong-1 Reentry". Center for Orbital and Reentry Debris Studies. The Aerospace Corporation. 2 April 2018. Archived from the original on 4 April 2018. Retrieved 2 April 2018.
  80. Grush, Loren (26 March 2018). "China's spiraling space station will plunge to Earth in about a week". The Verge. Retrieved 1 April 2018. And once it gets down to plus or minus six hours, you can start ruling out continents.
  81. "Tiangong-1 Reentry". Center for Orbital and Reentry Debris Studies. The Aerospace Corporation. 20 March 2018. Archived from the original on 22 March 2018. Retrieved 22 March 2018. The map below shows the relative probabilities of debris landing within a given region. Yellow indicates locations that have a higher probability while green indicates areas of lower probability. Blue areas have zero probability of debris reentry since Tiangong-1 does not fly over these areas (north of 42.7° N latitude or south of 42.7° S latitude). These zero probability areas constitute about a third of the total Earth's surface area.
  82. "Tiangong-1 Reentry". The Guardian. Retrieved 22 March 2018. China's Tiangong-1 space station has crashed in the Pacific Ocean, according to the country's space agency. The spacecraft re-entered the earth's atmosphere at 0015 UTC on Monday over the South Pacific and mostly burnt up on re-entry, state news agency Xinhua said.
  83. "Le satellite Tiangong-1 s'est écrasé au large de Maupiti" (in French). Polynésie la 1ère. Retrieved 28 August 2020.
  84. Specktor, Brandon (2 April 2018). "The Chinese Space Station Narrowly Missed Landing in the World's Largest 'Spacecraft Cemetery'". Live Science. Retrieved 3 April 2018.
  85. de Selding, Peter B. (20 June 2016). "China prepares assembly of its space station, invites collaboration through U.N." SpaceNews.
  86. "China to begin construction of manned space station in 2019". reuters.com. Reuters. 28 April 2017. Retrieved 3 April 2018.
  87. Clark, Stephen (20 April 2017). "First supply ship for Chinese space station lifts off on test flight". Spaceflight Now. Retrieved 29 March 2018.