Second manned spacecraft successfully takes off
Updated: 2005-10-12 08:58
piecemeal but ambitious space program took another giant step today, as two
Chinese taikonauts blasted into orbit on a state-of the-art Long March rocket on
the country's second manned space mission ever.
manned spacecraft Shenzhou VI blasts off into the sky Wednesday morning
October 12, 2005. [Xinhua]
The Shenzhou VI manned spacecraft blasted off with a loud launch noise
for a multi-day orbital stay from its satellite launch center in Jiuquan in
China's state-owned Central Television Station is carrying out a live
coverage of the spacecraft flight, with images of the two taikonauts clearly
shown to tens of millions of Chinese viewers.
Shenzhou VI was lifted into the space by a Long March carrier rocket at 9:00 am Beijing Time. It entered its orbit
21 minutes later.
Fei Junlong, 40, and Nie Haisheng, 41, will make a great
deal of experiments during their space journey.
"I feel good," Fei said minutes after blast-off.
"We have the confidence and ability to fulfil this glorious task. Our only
wish is to make the mission a complete success," Fei said before boarding
the craft. "Life in space is full of mysteries," Nie added.
Fei Junlong and Nie Haisheng lie in the
Shenzhou VI capsule before the launch Wednesday October 12, 2005. China
plans to launch its second manned space mission Wednesday morning. [China
"There is nothing to worry about," the two was
quoted as saying before the launch as a light snow fell. "We will accomplish the
mission resolutely. See you in Beijing."
Premier Wen Jiabao hailed the successful launch, reiterating China's policy
for peaceful use of space.
Wen said that China develops space technology purely for peaceful purposes
and China is willing to cooperate with other nations in the development of space
science and technology.