An artist's depiction of China's first space station, a 60-ton orbital complex, after its assembly is complete in 2020.
Display model of Tiangong I module at an exhibition hall at the China Academy of Space Technology, complete with access door for public viewing. A Long March 2F carrier rocket for Tiangong I arrived at China's Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center on July 23. Personnel and facilities from all subsystems and payloads are gathering at the launch center for the mission of the space laboratory, which are reportedly going well.
China's Tiangong 1 spacecraft and Long March 2F rocket is pictured at the launch site after being transferred from a facility at the Jiuquan Satellite Launching Center.
Take a look at how China's first space station, called Tiangong ("Heavenly Palace") will be assembled in orbit in this SPACE.com infographic.
China's Tiangong 1 space lab and its Chinese Long March 2F rocket is transferred to the launch site.
Photo of the Tiangong 1 module undergoing testing earlier in 2011.
China's integrated Tiangong 1 spacecraft and Long March 2F rocket is slowly rolled out of the vehicle assembly building to its launch site.
China is developing its first full-fledged space station, called Tiangong (Heavenly Palace). Early tests of China’s skills at rendezvous and docking, shown in this artist's illustration, are set to begin in 2011.
This graphic from a China Astronaut Training Center presentation depicts China's planned space station.
Shenzhou-8 undergoes testing in preparation for carrying out an unpiloted rendezvous and docking mission to the Tiangong-1platform.
The first public appearance of China's space station concept.
This graphic from a China Astronaut Training Center presentation depicts a Chinese Shenzhou spacecraft docked at the country's first space station module Tiangong-1.
An artist's illustration of Chinese astronauts spacewalking outside their Shenzhou spacecraft. Future Shenzhou missions will feature spacewalks ahead of orbital rendezvous and docking demonstrations.
The space station design was unveiled on a live broadcast to celebrate the Chinese New Year.
Chinese astronaut Zhai Zhigang waves from outside his Shenzhou 7 spacecraft September 27, 2008. He became his country's first spacewalker.
Zhai Zhigang waves the flag of the People's Republic of China from space, as his crewmate, Liu Boming, peeks his head out of the hatch.
NASA, Russia and their space station partners are not the only countries launching humans off the planet. China has launched two manned spaceflight aboard its Shenzhou spacecraft since 2003, with plans set for a three-person flight, spacewalks, future orbital laboratories and even unmanned and crewed moon mission in the coming decades. Here is an image of China's first spacewalk.
A Chinese Long March 3C rocket stands poised to launch China's second moon mission, the Chang'e 2 lunar orbiter, on Oct. 1, 2010.
Luo Ge (center), Vice Administrator of the China National Space Administration, dons a U.S. astronaut glove as he and his colleagues tour NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland earlier this month. Image Courtesy: GSFC/Christopher Gunn
China has developed a family of boosters over the years, including new development of a heavy-lift launcher to fly by 2011. Image
This illustration depicts a Chinese Shenzhou vehicle approaching the Tiangong 1 space lab during orbital rendezvous and docking tests, a precursor for space station construction.
China's astronaut corps are engaged in extensive training, in readiness for rendezvous and docking trials needed for space station operations.