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Shenzhou 8: Photos From China's 1st Space Docking Mission

Scientists Prepare SIMBOX Samples

DLR

German and Chinese researchers prepare biological samples for the SIMBOX research payload in a laboratory at the Chinese Academy of Sciences.

Tiangong 1 Space Lab Design

China Manned Space Engineering Office

This artist's illustration from a China space agency video shows the Tiangong 1 space laboratory, a prototype module for the country's planned space station.

The SIMBOX Research Payload

Astrium

The SIMBOX experiment hardware, consisting of a heated chamber and centrifuge, will carry biological samples in 40 compartments.

Shenzhou 8 Rolls to Launch Pad

China Manned Space Engineering

China's Long March 2F rocket, carrying the Shenzhou 8 spacecraft, rolls to the launch pad in preparation for its November 2011 launch.

China's Tiangong 1 Docking Concept

China Manned Space Engineering Office

A Chinese Shenzhou spacecraft closes in on the country's Tiangong 1 space lab in this still from a mission profile video.

Shenzhou 8 Preparation

Huang Xi / Wen Su-Dong

Workers prepare the Chinese Long March 2F rocket, carrying the Shenzhou 8 spacecraft, for its November 2011 launch.

Display Model of Tiangong I Module

Gregory Kulacki/People's Daily Online

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.

Tiangong 1 Cutaway: Moving Between Spacecraft

China Manned Space Engineering Office

This still from a China space agency video shows a cutaway of a Shenzhou spacecraft docked at the country's Tiangong 1 space lab, showing how astronauts will move between the two Chinese spacecraft.

Building China's Tiangong 1 Space Lab

China Manned Space Engineering Office

This still from a China space agency video shows the country's Tiangong 1 space lab module under construction for its planned 2011 launch.

Shenzhou 8 Launch — Rocket Close-up

CCTV

China's Shenzhou 8 spacecraft launched into Earth orbit on Oct. 31, 2011 atop a Long March 2F rocket. This close-up shot shows the rocket in action, shortly after liftoff.

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