China Astronaut Center is fully preparing for the space station mission

Product development, major tests, and astronaut training are proceeding in an orderly manner. Since the beginning of this year, the China Astronaut Center has chanted the slogan "Forge ahead in a new era, build a dream space station" and make every effort to prepare for the approaching space station mission.

Artist impression of the future Chinese Space Station. Image credit: CMSA

According to the plan, china will build a space station around 2022. The creation of a recyclable life support system similar to the earth's environment and stable operation in a closed and narrow space station cabin is the bottleneck and key technology for the long-term operation of the space station in orbit.

"Environmental control and life support technology is going from non-regeneration to regeneration. There is no precedent in China to follow." Bian Qiang, director of the Central Environmental Control and Life Insurance Office, said that they have never had a complete weekend since they started technical research and product development in 2011. Finally, the integrated performance test of environmental control and life support of the space station assembly has been completed.

In future space station missions, astronauts will take a long time to get out of the cabin and have many operating procedures, placing higher requirements on extravehicular spacesuits. At 21:58 on September 11, the hall of the center's extravehicular spacesuit test module was brightly lit. After 17 hours, the two volunteers experienced the actual pressure relief process during the exit mission from the outboard spacesuit test module that simulated the vacuum environment in orbit, and successfully completed the exit activity.

According to reports, the space environment is harsh, and extravehicular space suits need to maximize the safety of astronauts. To this end, the center's scientific researchers worked hard to improve the structural layout design, clothing life and ergonomics of the extravehicular spacesuit.

On September 16, at the astronauts water rescue training ground, three astronauts endured dizziness and sultry heat, lying in the narrow and sealed return capsule, taking off their space suits, putting on anti-immersion suits, exiting the capsule, and getting on the inflatable bed. A distress contact signal was issued, and a set of operating procedures were smooth and smooth. So far, the five-day training for astronauts to autonomously exit the cabin on water has been successfully completed.

In view of the high difficulty of the mission and the heavy workload of the space station, the Astronaut Center has strengthened the training of astronauts strictly. The training courses have been increased by dozens, and the training time has been nearly doubled. It is understood that even the new crown pneumonia epidemic has not stopped the astronauts' enthusiasm for training. They have stepped up training through online learning, video MOOC, and isolation accompanied by teachers.

In May 2020, the Long March 5B carrier rocket successfully flew for the first time, opening the prelude to the mission of my country's space station in the orbit construction phase. The leader of the center said that time is tight and tasks are heavy. Although "white plus black" and "6+1" are the normal work of the majority of scientific researchers, they have no complaints and no regrets, prepare for war, and contribute to the early realization of the great dream of building a space power.

Source: CNSA