BEIJING: China plans to develop its house station to 6 modules from three in coming years, providing astronauts from different nations another platform for near-earth missions because the NASA-led Worldwide Area Station (ISS) nears the tip of its lifespan.
The operational lifetime of the Chinese language house station can be greater than 15 years, the China Academy of Area Expertise (CAST), a unit of China’s primary house contractor, mentioned on the 74th Worldwide Astronautical Congress in Baku, Azerbaijan, on Wednesday (Oct 4).
That may be greater than the ten years beforehand introduced.
China’s self-built house station, often known as Tiangong, or Celestial Palace in Chinese language, has been absolutely operational since late 2022, internet hosting a most of three astronauts at an orbital altitude of as much as 450km.
At 180 metric tonnes after its enlargement to 6 modules, Tiangong remains to be simply 40 per cent of the mass of the ISS, which might maintain a crew of seven astronauts. However the ISS, in orbit for greater than twenty years, is predicted to be decommissioned after 2030, about the identical time China has mentioned it expects to change into “a significant house energy”.
Chinese language state media mentioned final 12 months as Tiangong turned absolutely operational that China can be no “slouch” because the ISS headed towards retirement, including that “a number of international locations” had requested to send their astronauts to the Chinese station.