Figure:Long March 2F-Yao 11 Carrier Rocket was lifted off from Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center[Photo/Zhang Zhihui]
At 07:30 a.m. on October 17, Long March 2F-Yao 11 Carrier Rocket was lifted off from Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center, carrying the Shenzhou 11 Human Spaceship crewed by 2 astronauts, namely Jing Haipeng and Chen Dong. About 575 seconds later, the spaceship successfully separated from the rocket and entered pre-set orbit with good conditions, marking the success of the launch mission.
This is the 6th human spaceflight of China and the 2nd application flight undertaken by the round-trip human spaceflight transportation system with upgraded Shenzhou Spaceship atop Long March 2F-Yao 11 Carrier Rocket. According to preset procedures, the spaceflight will conduct independent orbit flight for 2 days before automatic rendezvous and docking with Tiangong 2 where the astronauts will accomplish 30 days of medium stay and conduct space science and applied technology experiments as well as scientific popularization activities. Shenzhou 11 Spaceship will then separate from Tiangong 2 Spacelab and fly independently for 1 day before return to the landing area, while Tiangong 2 will maneuver to independent operational orbit to continue space science and applied technology experiments and wait for Tianzhou 1 flight mission in the future.
At present, Tiangong 2 is orbiting on the near circular orbit 393 kilometers above the earth. All instruments on-board are operating in good conditions and ready for the rendezvous and docking mission and accommodating the astronauts.
Long March 2F-Yao 11 Carrier Rocket has similar technical specifications to that of Long March 2F-Yao 10, with partial modifications to improve safety and reliability. This is the 237th flight mission undertaken by Long March Rocket family. (Zhong Zaitian)