18 astronauts ready for space station construction missions

Beijing: The China Manned Space Engineering Office (CMSEO) revealed that the development of various modules of China’s space station is progressing smoothly, and the crew astronauts have been selected to carry out four missions of space station construction, which lasts for three to six months each.
The CMSEO said that each crew has three astronauts who are now receiving mission training. They will be commanded by experienced astronauts who have conducted previous missions, the China Youth Daily reported on Wednesday.
Eighteen stand-by astronauts, including one female, have been selected in China’s third selection of stand-by astronauts for the country’s manned space flight project.
A total of seven pilots, seven engineers and four payload specialists have been selected. Engineers and payload specialists were selected for the first time into China’s astronaut team in order to meet the requirements of the construction of space stations.
The construction of China’s space station started with a successful maiden flight of its new large carrier rocket, the Long March-5B, in May.
The rocket will mostly carry capsules of China’s space stations and large spacecraft to low-Earth orbit, according to China Academy of Launch Vehicle Technology, Xinhua reported.
According to plan, China’s space station will successively launch the Tianhe core module, the Wentian lab capsule I and the Mengtian lab capsule II, to assemble and build the space stations’ basic configuration in orbit.
In the meantime, four Shenzhou manned spacecraft and four Tianzhou cargo spacecraft are to be launched to carry out crew rotation and cargo resupply.
Astronaut training has been fully turned into preparation for the space station missions since March 2017, according to CMSEO.
China is in full preparation for the construction of the space station, striving to complete the in-orbit construction plan around 2022, so as to achieve the long-term stable on-orbit operation of the space station, media reported.
–The Daily Mail-Global Times News Exchange Item