The first woman aboard China’s new space station has snapped some glorious shots of our homeworld during a six-month mission to space.
An image taken by Wang on Nov. 18 shows Qinghai lake at the bottom of the image pointing east towards the distant East China Sea.
Qinghai lake is described by the UNESCO World Heritage Centre as an inland saline wetland of international importance.
Wang’s colleagues, commander Zhai Zhigang and Ye Guangfu, took photos of Wang in the Tianhe module as she floated in microgravity and handled apples.
Wang Yaping is a veteran of the 2013 Shenzhou 10 mission to the smaller Tiangong 1 space lab. During the two-week mission Wang delivered a live lecture on space physics to a class of children back on Earth, with millions of Chinese school children also watching the live broadcast.
The astronaut, who became the first Chinese woman to embark on an extravehicular activity, or spacewalk, is expected to perform a similar duty at some point during the six-month-long Shenzhou 13 mission.
Zhai, Wang and Ye began their mission on Oct 15 and carried out their first spacewalk on Nov. 7. The crew’s duties include testing and preparing the Tianhe module to receive new modules next year, as well as performing experiments and conducting science outreach.
The mission follows the three-month-long Shenzhou 12 mission which launched in June, sending the first three astronauts to Tianhe.
Meanwhile back on Earth in the Gobi Desert, Shenzhou 14 and a Long March 2F rocket stand in a state of near-readiness in case of an emergency on Tianhe.
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