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Home >> China
UPDATED: 08:40, October 17, 2005
Shenzhou-VI spacecraft returns home
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Photo:Taikonaut Fei Junlong steps down the re-entry capsule.
Taikonaut Fei Junlong steps down the re-entry capsule.
The re-entry module of China's second manned spacecraft Shenzhou-VI, with astronauts Fei Junlong and Nie Haisheng onboard, touched down at the primary landing site in Siziwang Banner (county) of Inner Mongolia at 4:32 a.m. on Oct. 17, 2005 (Beijing Time).

The spacecraft, which has orbited the earth for five days, has accomplished planned experiments and accumulated valuable technical data and experiences for the development of China's manned space program since it was launched on Oct. 12, 2005.

China's Shenzhou-6 spacecraft lands safely after successful mission

The re-entry capsule of China's Shenzhou-6 spacecraft, carrying taikonauts Fei Junlong and Nie Haisheng, landed on earth safely at 4:33 a.m. Monday, marking a "complete success" of China's second manned space mission after it put the first Chinese national in space two years ago.

Chinese top legislator Wu Bangguo declared China's second manned space mission a "complete success," claiming it a "milestone" in China's space technology development and its space experiments with human participation.

"The successful mission is of great significance for elevating China's prestige in the world, promoting China's economic, scientific and national defense capabilities and consolidating the national cohesiveness," he said at the Beijing Aerospace Command and Control Center.

Both taikonauts are "in fine conditions," doctors said after physical checkup upon landing. They landed just 1 km away from the preset spot after a 115-hour-and-32-minute spaceflight, which was more than five times that of China's maiden manned spaceflight two years ago.

Fei and Nie stepped down a ladder from the capsule by themselves, and were seated for a bouquet of flowers and to get used to Earth's gravity.

"We feel fine," said all-smile Fei. Nie thanked all the Chinese people for their "concern and support." Both waved flowers to the

excited welcoming crowd.

They were later fed with chocolate, Chinese herbal tea. Nie seemed in a very good appetite and took a bowl of instant noodle, before the two men were flown by two Super Puma helicopters to

nearby airport where they will head for Beijing by a special plane.

The space mission have gripped the sight of the whole nation in the past five days.

"We can have a final laughter," beaming Liu Yu, commanding chief of the rocket system told Xinhua. "It was a mission perfectly fulfilled."

Television pictures showed parents of the two taikonauts burst into tears when they saw their sons emerging from the spacecraft early Monday morning.

Chinese president Hu Jintao were present at the Beijing Aerospace Command and Control Center to watch the lift-off on Wednesday and talked with taikonauts on Saturday. Chinese premier Wen Jiabao was at the launch site to see off the two men with best wishes before the launch.

Luckily, Nie spent his 41st birthday in space and received a phone call from his wife and daughter. The joyful daughter's sweet song "Happy Birthday to You" has warmed the hearts of millions of Chinese television viewers.

Fei and Nie blasted off Wednesday morning on China's second manned space mission. Before landing, Shenzhou-6 have been racing around the Earth one circle in every 90 minutes 343 km above the Earth at a speed of 7.9 km per second. It flew 3.25 million kilometers in space.

Fei and Nie have conducted a series of unprecedented experiments on the spacecraft, including the maneuvers between the orbital and re-entry capsules, taking on and off space suits, using space toilet and the self-test of blood pressure.

During China's maiden space flight in 2003, lone astronaut Yang Liwei never left his seat in the re-entry capsule nor take off his space suit. That space mission has made China the third country to put human into space following Russia and the United States.

By People's Daily Online


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