Shenzhou 12

Summary

Shenzhou 12
Post S-7 Shenzhou spacecraft.png
Diagram of a Shenzhou spacecraft, like the one that will fly on Shenzhou 12.
Spacecraft properties
Spacecraft typeShenzhou
ManufacturerCASC
Crew
Crew size3
MembersTBA
TBA
TBA
Start of mission
Launch dateNET June 2021[1]
RocketLong March 2F
Launch siteJiuquan LA-4/SLS
End of mission
Landing dateNET 2021
Landing siteInner Mongolia
Orbital parameters
Reference systemGeocentric
RegimeLow Earth
Docking with Chinese Space Station
Docking portTianhe-1
 

Shenzhou 12 is a Chinese spaceflight planned to launch no earlier than June 2021. The flight will mark the seventh crewed Chinese spaceflight and the seventh crewed flight of the Shenzhou programme. The spacecraft is scheduled to carry two to three CNSA Taikonauts on the first flight to Tianhe-1, the first module of the Chinese large modular space station, scheduled for launch on a Long March 5B rocket sometime in 2021[2]

Crew

Following the first test launch of a Long March 5B rocket on 5 May 2020, it was confirmed that the flight crew had been internally named, although no details about the Taikonauts who will fly the mission have been made public yet.[3] It was also at one point speculated that the mission might involve one or more female Taikonauts, and could mark the first time a Chinese woman commands a space mission or performs an EVA.[4]

Position Crew Member
Commander China TBA, CNSA
TBA spaceflight
Operator 1 China TBA, CNSA
TBA spaceflight
Operator 2 China TBA, CNSA
TBA spaceflight

Mission

Shenzhou 12 was originally planned as the second visiting mission for the Tiangong-2 space station, following Shenzhou 11, although in 2016 plans for a second mission to Tiangong-2 were cancelled, and Shenzhou 12 was replanned as the first crewed Shenzhou mission to the Chinese large modular space station which at the time will only consist of one module, Tianhe-1, scheduled for launch in early 2021.[5] The flight will mark the first of four "construction" Shenzhou missions, ahead of the station beginning full operation in 2023.[citation needed]

The mission will visit the Core Cabin Module (the official name of Tianhe-1) following the launch of Tianzhou 2, the second flight of China's Tianzhou cargo resupply craft. Although it has not been made clear yet if Tianzhou 2 will remain on the station for the duration or any of Shenzhou 12's stay on the station, it is a possibility as the CCM will have more than one docking port as opposed to China's two previous space stations.[6]

References

  1. ^ "Spaceflight mission report: Shezhou XII". Spacefacts. 7 February 2021. Retrieved 9 February 2021.
  2. ^ "Future China human spaceflight missions revealed". 10 March 2017.
  3. ^ https://twitter.com/AJ_FI/status/1257644667258261510
  4. ^ "SZ-12 Shenzhou-12 - CZ-2F - JSLC - 2020".
  5. ^ "Notitie op de muur".
  6. ^ "Long March 7 | Tianzhou 2".