Three Chinese astronauts returned to Earth Friday after spending 13 days in space aboard a space station prototype. The Shenzhou 9 crew landed on grass in Inner Mongolia around 10 a.m.
Chinese Space Mission A Success: Astronauts Come Home
The mission was the most ambitious to date by the burgeoning Chinese space program and included docking practice as well as medical observation. Both aided in future plans for a manned space station similar to the ISS currently in orbit.
All crew members, including China’s first female astronaut, arrived home in good health. While astronauts for the Shenzhou 10 mission are being chosen, the next mission’s timeframe is unknown.