Beijing may add more modules to the newly completed Tiangong station, a senior space official said.
China is considering expanding its Tiangong space station, said Wang Xiang, head of space station systems at the China Academy of Space Technology (CAST).
The senior official spoke to the media following the successful return of the Shenzhou-14 mission astronauts (also known as cosmonauts) over the weekend.
“Under our current design, we can continue to launch an expansion module to attach to the front part of the space station, and the expansion module can carry a new hub to connect to the space station. next space vehicles,” Wang told CCTV.
Potential expansion could include a new core module for the station, which now comes in three parts, the official suggested. However, he did not confirm that these plans have been approved by Beijing.
The station received its final third module, the Mengtian Space Laboratory, in November. According to the China Manned Space Administration (CMSA), the new module contains instruments for microgravity research. forces and conducts experiments in fluid physics, materials science, combustion science, and basic physics.
The station also incorporates the Tianhe core module, launched in April 2021, and another space laboratory, Wentian. The country began building its own space station after being excluded from the International Space Station (ISS) program in 2011, when the US government banned NASA from working with Beijing.
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