Beijing, April 24 (IANS): China's largest carrying capacity Long March-5B carrier rocket is scheduled to make its maiden flight in the first half of 2020, according to the China Manned Space Engineering Office (CMSEO).
China has been creating a new line of launchers for advancing its space station plans, as well as bolstering its capability to land robots -- and possibly humans -- on the Moon.
March-5B is a new generation low-Earth orbit rocket that will carry the core capsule and experiment capsules of the Chinese space station, Xinhua news agency reported on Wednesday.
The Tiangong Space Station which mainly comprises of Core Capsule, Experiment Capsule I and Experiment Capsule II, is aimed to be a reliable operating space station to provide long-term support for the onboard astronauts.
The space station project will be implemented in three phases: key technology validation, construction and operation.
Six flight missions, including the maiden flight of the Long March-5B rocket and launch of the test core capsule, have been scheduled in the first phase, and launches of experiment capsules in the second phase.