- Language Tips
A four-hour rehearsal for the country's first manned space-docking mission ended successfully on Tuesday, meaning the launch of Shenzhou IX, scheduled for "sometime around mid-June", can go ahead as planned.
The rehearsal, held at the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in Northwest China's Gansu province, involved all systems of the mission, such as spacecraft, carrier rocket and launch site.
The astronauts selected for the mission also participated in the rehearsal and "worked in harmony", a statement from the space program said.
Though their names have yet to be announced, Guangzhou-based Nanfang Daily published pictures on Tuesday showing six astronauts arriving at the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center, including two female reserve astronauts.
Dressed in blue uniforms and black boots, they participated in a flag-raising ceremony and planted trees at their residence inside the launch center on Sunday.
Earlier reports said one of the two female reserve astronauts is likely to board the Shenzhou IX spacecraft and become the country's first female astronaut.
- Xin Dingding
(China Daily 06/13/2012 page1)