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China to send second woman into space: officials

world Updated: Jun 11, 2013 02:04 IST
Sutirtho Patranobis
Sutirtho Patranobis
Hindustan Times
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A woman astronaut, the daughter of a farmer, will be among the three crew members of Shenzhou-10 spacecraft when it flies into space on Tuesday.

Wang Yaping, from a farmer’s family in east China, is the second female astronaut in China’s manned space mission and the first one born in the 1980s.

Liu Yang was the first Chinese woman astronaut to go space when Shenzhou-9 was launched in June, 2012.

Wang’s two male colleagues aboard the spacecraft Shenzhou-10 — divine craft in Chinese — are Nie Haisheng and Zhang Xiaoguang; all three are Communist Party of China (CPC) members and officers of the People’s Liberation Army (PLA).

“The spacecraft will travel in the space for 15 days and go through two docking tests with the orbiting space lab module Tiangong-1, one automatic and the other manual. Besides medical and technical tests, astronauts will give a lecture to a group of students on the ground inside the Tiangong-1, introducing the weightless condition,” Wu Ping, the spokesperson for China’s space programme, told a press conference at the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Centre located in the Gobi desert.