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China's First Cargo Spacecraft to Leave Factory
SOURCE: Xinhua UPDATED: 17 January 2017

BEIJING, Jan. 17 (Xinhua) -- China's first cargo spacecraft will leave the factory, according to the website of China's manned space mission.

A review meeting was convened last Thursday, during which officials and experts unanimously concluded that the Tianzhou-1 cargo spacecraft had met all the requirements to leave the factory.

The take-off weight of Tianzhou-1 is 13 tonnes and it can ship material of up to six tonnes.

The spacecraft, which is scheduled to be launched in April from the southern province of Hainan, will dock with the Tiangong-2 space lab and refuel it.

It will be a crucial step for China in building a space station by 2020, as cargo spacecraft are required to ship necessities for astronauts aboard the space station.

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