When it comes to space, China is a nation of rising stars. China’s ambitions to become a superpower in space have long been a cause for concern in other countries, especially America. In recent years, however, China has taken a big step forward in becoming a major player in the space industry. China’s Tiangong Space Station is under construction due in 2022. So, where is Tiangong located, and how high is it? We’ll tell you.
Where Is The Tiangong Space Station?
The Tiangong Space Station, also known as the Heavenly Palace of the Chinese Astronauts, is a space station that China is building in the low Earth orbit. The core capsule of the space station, named Tianhe is already in place, orbiting Earth every 91 minutes. Tianhe is visible with the naked eye, and if you know where and when to look, you will see it.
This celestial space station consists of three modules; Tianhe Core Module (Harmony of Heavens), Wentian Laboratory Cabin Module (Quest for Heavens) and Mengtian Laboratory Cabin Module (Dreaming of Heavens). Tianhe, which is the main habitat for astronauts, was launched on 29 April 2021. The other two modules, Mengtian and Wentian, are dedicated to hosting experiments and both of which are due to launch in 2022. Although the station is being built by China alone, nine other nations have already signed on to fly experiments aboard Tiangong.
How High Is It?
Tiangong Space Station will orbit at an altitude of between 211 and 280 miles (340 to 450 kilometres) above Earth and between 43 degrees north and south.
The Chinese space station, Tiangong, will be much smaller (approx. one-fifth) than the International Space Station. With only 3 modules compared with 16 modules on the ISS. However, the space station could potentially be expanded to six modules in the future. Tiangong (70 tons) will also be lighter than the ISS, which weighs about 400 tons.