Launch News Shenzhou 9, Long March 2F, June 16, 2012 (mission updates)

Galactic Penguin SST

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FINALLY! After waiting for more than 3 years, the Chinese are getting ready for their first manned space station flight ever. The crew of 3, including the first Chinese woman in space, will apparently stay at the Tiangong 1 mini-station for 10 days.

The rumored launch time is 10:41 UTC on June 16 (should be correct to the nearest 5 minutes), although the announcement has yet to be made. The crew performing the flight should be known by next week.

This thread will cover the whole mission from rollout (apparently scheduled on tomorrow) to landing.

Good luck! :cheers:
 

N_Molson

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Good thing to see another nation developping a manned space program.
 

Galactic Penguin SST

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It's 'rollin.....

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Zachstar

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Alright! This is going to be a great moment in space history as for the first time in many years there will be two manned space stations in Orbit. And with a successful mission I hope they will give the space program more funds to increase their flight rate.
 

Galactic Penguin SST

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From rumors on English and Chinese forums, it looks like the June 16 launch date is secure. Apparently it was not a coincidence: on June 16, 1963, cosmonaut Valentina Tereshkova became the first woman in space on-board Vostok 6. And on June 18, 1983, space shuttle Challenger was launched on mission STS-7 with the first woman astronaut, Sally Ride.

Rumors are abound that the choice of China's first woman in space fell to 32 years old Wang Yaping, a transport aircraft pilot with the PLA air force (I believe her current rank is a Captain).

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Star Voyager

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Wow, she's pretty good-looking. I certainly hope the Chinese have lots of coverage for this mission :thumbup:!
 

orb

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Here's O-F's calendar event for the launch. Here, you can request a reminder for it.


Spaceflight Now:
Zarya.info: Go For Launch!:
{...} The aim is, two or three days after launch, to complete an automatic rendezvous to a distance of 150 metres and for the crew of three to conduct a manually- controlled docking. {...}

The [Jun 16, 10:39 UTC] date is the start of an approximately eight day launch window. The time is ±3 minutes.

Launch opportunities occur on alternate days, other possibilities are (UTC), all ±3 minutes:
  • Jun 18 - 09:43
  • Jun 20 - 08:47
  • Jun 22 - 07:52
  • Jun 24 - 06:56

Web TV coverage (Flash):
http://english.cntv.cn/live/

Web TV coverage (iPad):
http://english.cntv.cn/live/p2p/

More on the launch date (English):
http://www.zarya.info/Diaries/China/Shenzhou/Shenzhou09Analysis.php

More on the launch date (Chinese):
http://www.zarya.info/Diaries/China/Shenzhou/Shenzhou09Analysiscn.php

Further notes:
http://www.zarya.info/Diaries/China/Shenzhou/Shenzhou09.php

Tiangong 1 orbit chronology:
http://www.zarya.info/Diaries/Launches/Launches.php?year=2011#053

{...}
 

Galactic Penguin SST

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The prime and back-up crews have arrived at the launch site on Saturday, and their identities are now known, as they have participated in a flag-raising and tree-planting ceremony (similar to the ones ISS crews now do at Baikonur) today:

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From left to right: Wang Yaping, Zhang Xiaoguan, Nie Haisheng, Liu Yang, Liu Wang, Jing Haipeng

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The commander seat will probably fell to either of two astronauts with prior flight experience: Shenzhou 6 flight engineer Nie Haisheng and Shenzhou 7 flight engineer Jing Haipeng. Either of them will pilot the spacecraft for a manual docking with Tiangong 1.

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jing_haipen.jpg


The "First Chinese woman in space" seat will be taken by Wang Yaping
(described above) or by 34 years old Liu Yang, a fighter jet pilot from the PLA air force (yup, she's also good looking too :cool:).

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The last member of this flight will either be Liu Wang or Zhang Xiaoguan, both from China's first astronaut class and has yet to fly.
 

Zachstar

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A question to those with knowledge of the US law.

I know that congress made it pretty much forbidden for NASA to have anything to do with china period. However that does not forbid say the president inviting them to the white house after the flight no?
 
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Codz

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If it were allowed, I doubt it would happen. I don't think we ever allowed Yuri Gagarin or Alexei Leonov to come over after they completed their flights.
 

Marvin42

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I tired google but found nothing: what were those flecks of lights Titov saw?
Sorry for offtopic
 

Galactic Penguin SST

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I tired google but found nothing: what were those flecks of lights Titov saw?
Sorry for offtopic

I've yet to make the necessary research, but my guess is these are fuel used for attitude adjustments that got ejected during thruster firing..

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It turns out that there are advanced oxygen generation and water/urine processing systems on board TG-1! It must be quite cramped in there: the living space has less space than in a MPLM, yet the Chinese managed to put two sleeping stations, exercising equipment (including a mounted bicycle!), control equipment, system racks, and storage space all in a volume slightly smaller than ATV's cargo module! (40 cubic meters, compared to about 75 m^3 for the MPLM and 90 m^3 for Salyut 1)

The crew had performed a terminal countdown test yesterday, with satisfactory results.
 

Galactic Penguin SST

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An overview of the activities at the launch site:

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The Shenzhou 9 spacecraft arrived at the launch site on April 9

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The modules being inspected on April 19

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On April 24 the three modules are attached

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The Long March 2F rocket arrived by rail on May 10

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The rocket's first and second stages, and the boosters were erected on May 14.

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The Shenzhou 9 spacecraft was transferred to the fueling area on May 26.
 

Galactic Penguin SST

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The launch pad's fueling system being tested on May 30

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Training of the emergency procedures for escaping from the pad for the Shenzhou 9 crew on May 31

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The Shenzhou 9 spacecraft was transferred to the VAB and installed on the rocket on June 7

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The rocket rolled out to the pad on June 9

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A Terminal Count Demonstration Test was held on June 12

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T-3 days and counting...
 
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