22:29 GMT +310 December 2019
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    A man performs dragon dance as China's Yuanwang-6 space tracking ship is docked in Hong Kong's Victoria Harbor (File)

    New Space Tracking Ship Yuanwang-7 Launched in China

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    Asia & Pacific
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    China launched on Tuesday new space tracking ship Yuanwang-7, which is expected to monitor Chinese space missions, local media reported.

    BEIJING (Sputnik) — According to China Radio International (CRI), the construction of the 721 feet-long vessel started in 2014. The Yuanwang-7 with displacement of 25,000 tons is capable to resist bad weather conditions and perform maritime tracking for 100 days, the broadcaster said.

    The broadcaster noted that the vessel would track the flight of manned spacecraft Shenzhou-11, which is expected to be launched in October 2016 and dock with China's orbiting space lab Tiangong-2 with two astronauts on board. The astronauts will be capable to work at the Tiangong-2 for up to 30 days.

    The launch of Tiangong-2 is planned for the fall. The module set to replace the Tiangong-1 prototype, which has been in orbit since 2011.

    In early January, the China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation said that Beijing will conduct over 20 space missions in 2016, including the launch of a manned spacecraft.

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    launch, spacecraft, ship, Shenzhou-11, Yuanwang-7, China
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