China to send Shenzhou VI in mid-October

China's second manned spacecraft Shenzhou VI is scheduled to be lifted in mid-October, said China's first astronaut Yang Liwei.

The mission is supposed to last five to seven days with two astronauts on board, Yang revealed when meeting with military officers in Nanjing on Saturday. Yang came to the city to attend a space exhibition.

"I will not take this mission." Yang said, citing the reason to make way for more young talented astronauts.

In the space, astronauts of Shenzhou VI will for the first time enter the craft's orbit capsule instead of being stuck within the return capsule as Yang did on his 21-hour space trip two years ago onboard the Shenzhou V craft.

According to Yang, the journey on Shenzhou VI would be more comfortable. Heated food, sleeping bags and essential sanitary equipment would become available on the spacecraft. Astronauts also afford the time for alternated sleep.

Starting from next year, China is to begin a major recruitment of astronauts, among whom are a portion of women.

Yang also said China's training for astronauts is the hardest among others in the world.Enditem

Source: China Daily



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