4th Unmanned Space Capsule Is Launched
China’s fourth unmanned space capsule, the Shenzhou IV, blasted into orbit today from the Gobi Desert in a launch that could soon lead to a manned flight, the official New China News Agency said.
The capsule carries equipment for manned flight, and life support and other systems will be tested in orbit.
A successful manned launch would make China the third country, after Russia and the U.S., to send a human into space on its own. At least two Chinese have been sent to Russia for astronaut training.