China has sent its youngest-ever astronaut crew to the Tiangong space station
. The three-member crew consists of Commander Nie Haisheng, Zhang Tianhe, and Yue Binnan, who are all in their 30s. They launched from the Gobi desert in the evening of June 16th, 2021, in China’s new Long March 5B rocket. This is the first time a Chinese crew has been sent to the Tiangong space station, and their mission is to conduct scientific experiments. The mission is part of China’s ambitions to become a space-faring country with its own permanent space station, which is set to become operational in 2022. After arriving at the station, the crew will stay for three months before returning to Earth. It is the first of 11 planned launches related to the Chinese space station program, and is an important milestone in space exploration. During their stay, the crew is expected to conduct numerous experiments related to scientific fields such as genetic science, space medicine, and space biology. These experiments are expected to produce valuable data and insights into the effects of space on living things, and may eventually help to develop the technology and techniques needed for long-term space habitation. The mission is being closely monitored by the international community and is a major step forward in the peaceful exploration of space.