Shenzhou 9, Chinese Spaceship has finally docked with Chinese orbiting module in the space, putting Chinese space dreams on course
China has achieved a great feat in the space by not just sending a woman astronaut in the space, but also docking its space ship with its orbiting module. It is a great achievement not just for Chinese space program, but also for the international space efforts as a whole.
The manually docking of a space ship with an orbiting space module is among the toughest task and when recently privately owned SpaceX successfully docked its Dragon spaceship with International Space Station, it was marked as a great achievement. It was notwithstanding the fact that the whole show was choreographed by NASA. SpaceX project is funded by US government where NASA has infused hundreds of millions of dollars into it.
Meanwhile the whole 1.3 billion strong Chinese nation is watching the whole space voyage of their three astronauts live on their television sets. It is an occasion of pride for the whole nation and they are savoring the occasion. Chinese government is making it look like a concrete step towards establishing their first space station.
Last year, the Chinese government had released its five-year space program, saying top priorities include developing three new launch vehicles — including a rapid-response launch system — and mitigating its contribution to space debris. The 17-page white paper, “China’s Space Activities in 2011,” made clear China’s focus on lunar exploration, with robotic lunar landers and a lunar sample-return mission slated for launch by 2016. The country’s well-publicized development of its manned space station in low Earth orbit is also a priority.
The docking of Chinese space ship is a great occasion for them and truly puts them on course to successfully launch their space station. So far, the US and other European powers have prevented China from becoming a part of the space program including the International space Station (ISS). Now with this new maneuver China has proved beyond doubt that it is on course to equal American and Russian achievements in space exploration.