A Long March-7 rocket carrying the Tianzhou-4 spacecraft lifted off at 5:56 pm GMT Monday from the Wenchang Space Center in southern Hainan Province.
The Chinese Manned Space Agency said that the Tianzhou-4 spacecraft docked with the main module “Tianhe” of the space station at 00:54 am Tuesday GMT.
The agency added that the vehicle transported propulsion tools, experimental samples, and some payloads and supplies for three astronauts on board the station, according to Reuters.
Three astronauts will travel to Tianhe next June on the Shenzhou-14 spacecraft, where they will live and work for six months.
China plans to complete its first space station at the end of this year, becoming a major competitor to the world’s only station, the International Space Station.
On April 16, Chinese state television announced the return of 3 Chinese astronauts to Earth, after they spent 183 days in space, completing the longest Chinese manned space mission so far.
The astronauts landed 9 hours after they left the main module of China’s first space station, according to Reuters.
After their October launch aboard the Shenzhou-13 spacecraft, astronauts Zhai Zhigang and Wei Guangfu and astronaut Wang Yaping spent 183 days in space, completing the fifth of 11 missions needed to finish construction of China’s Tianhe space station by the end of the year.
Shenzhou-13 is the second of four manned missions to complete construction of the space station, which began last April.
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