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Shenzhou-17 spaceship successfully lands in N China with three-member crew

Gong Zhe

 , Updated 16:27, 01-May-2024

The re-entry capsule of the Shenzhou-17 spaceship, carrying three astronauts aboard, touched down at the Dongfeng landing site in north China's Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region at 5:46 p.m. (Beijing Time), and all three crew members left the return capsule by 6:37 p.m., according to the China Manned Space Agency (CMSA).

Initial health checks showed that the three crew members, Tang Hongbo, Tang Shengjie and Jiang Xinlin, were in good condition.

"Every time I fly over the homeland, I always look for it," Tang told China Media Group right after he exited the capsule. "Thanks for everyone's attention. I miss you so much."


Tang set the record for the longest stay in space for an astronaut, totaling 279 days for his two trips to the China Space Station.

China has announced that the Shenzhou-17 manned spaceflight mission was a complete success.

Click here for CGTN's livestream of the event.

The three astronauts were launched to the China Space Station last October and have lived in orbit for about half a year.

On Thursday, China launched the Shenzhou-18 manned spaceship, sending three more astronauts, Ye Guangfu, Li Cong and Li Guangsu, to its space station for another six-month mission. The Shenzhen-17 trio met with the new trio on Friday for an in-orbit crew handover.

The Shenzhou-17 crew carried out 84 in-orbit experiments and tests for space applications, producing more than 200 samples in multiple fields such as space life science and biotechnology, space medicine and space material science. The crew will deliver the samples for scientific study, potentially leading to significant scientific advancements.

Previously, the cable of the Tianhe core module's solar panels was hit by space debris, causing a partial loss in power supply. In response, the Shenzhou-17 crew carried out two extravehicular activities, completing China's first-ever extravehicular repair mission.

Read more: Shenzhou-17 highlights a new chapter of China Space Station adventure

Apart from manned missions, China aims to launch the Chang'e-6 lunar probe in early May. The probe is set to collect samples from the far side of the moon in a mission that will be the first of its kind in human history.

The Chang'e-7 is scheduled to be launched around 2026, and Chang'e-8 around 2028. Chang'e-7 and Chang'e-8 will form the basic model for a lunar research station to carry out further exploration of the lunar environment, according to CNSA.

(Liu Yuyao contributed to the story.)

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