Feeds

China to take women to heaven and back

Manned 2012 spaceships could have two female taikonauts

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

China is considering sending two female astronauts into space on its first manned missions to its space lab module next year.

An unmanned spacecraft, Shenzhou-8, is launching this evening and will be testing space docking with Tiangong-1. If the mission is successful, China is planning Shenzhou-9 and Shenzhou-10 next year, at least one of which will be manned, spokeswoman Wu Ping told the Xinhua news agency.

Chen Shanguang, director of the Astronaut Centre of China (ACC) said two women had been selected for the possible flights.

"We must assess both male and female astronauts to verify if human beings can live in space, as there are huge differences between men and women in spite of their common generalities," Chen told Xinhua in a separate interview.

"Space exploration activities would be incomplete without the participation of female astronauts," he added.

Nine crew members in total are preparing for the manned missions and are already being trained with manual docking skills.

The seven male crew members are from the country's first batch of 14 astronauts, which includes Yang Liwei, China's first astronaut into space in 2003, Chen said.

The two women were both airfreighter pilots before enrolling in the space programme and are from the second batch of astronauts recruited in late 2009 and early 2010.

The unmanned Shenzhou-8 will dock with the Tiangong-1, or "Heavenly Palace" two days after its launch, stay attached for 12 days, then carry out a second docking later, Wu said.

If it all goes to plan, it will make China the third country to master docking technology after the US and Russia and pave the way for China's plans to put a permanent space station in orbit in 2020. ®

Remote control for virtualized desktops

More from The Register

next story
Antarctic ice THICKER than first feared – penguin-bot boffins
Robo-sub scans freezing waters, rocks warming models
I'll be back (and forward): Hollywood's time travel tribulations
Quick, call the Time Cops to sort out this paradox!
Your PHONE is slowly KILLING YOU
Doctors find new Digitillnesses - 'text neck' and 'telepressure'
Reuse the Force, Luke: SpaceX's Elon Musk reveals X-WING designs
And a floating carrier for recyclable rockets
NASA launches new climate model at SC14
75 days of supercomputing later ...
Britain's HUMAN DNA-strewing Moon mission rakes in £200k
3 days, and Kickstarter moves lander 37% nearer takeoff
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing and building an open ITOA architecture
Learn about a new IT data taxonomy defined by the four data sources of IT visibility: wire, machine, agent, and synthetic data sets.
How to determine if cloud backup is right for your servers
Two key factors, technical feasibility and TCO economics, that backup and IT operations managers should consider when assessing cloud backup.
Getting started with customer-focused identity management
Learn why identity is a fundamental requirement to digital growth, and how without it there is no way to identify and engage customers in a meaningful way.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Website security in corporate America
Find out how you rank among other IT managers testing your website's vulnerabilities.