China has today successfully completed the deployment of the supply vessel Tianzhou-2, carrying supplies and fuel, to the Chinese space station, according to the Asian country's Space Agency for Manned Missions (AEMT).
Tianzhou-2 was supposed to take off on May 20, but Beijing has postponed the launch for technical reasons.
The docking with the main module of the Chinese space station, launched on April 29, took place at 05:01 local time (21:01 on Saturday in Lisbon).
The mission lasted about eight hours after launching from the Wenchang Space Center on Hainan Island in southern China.
On board, the unmanned spacecraft carried provisions and equipment for the astronauts, as well as fuel.
A dozen launches are planned by the end of next year to transport the space station's other two modules, various components and a three-person team.
The launch of the Chinese space station's Tianhe central module was considered a success, but China was widely criticized for allowing the uncontrolled re-entry of the portions of the rocket that transported it into Earth orbit.
The administrator of the US National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), Bill Nelson, considered at the time that Beijing had failed to meet the necessary standards when it came to handling space debris.
The Chinese space program has faced some setbacks since putting an astronaut into orbit in 2003. The launch of the space station, for example, has been delayed because of a failure in the first version of the giant Long March 5B rocket.
Earlier this month, however, China managed to land the Tianwen-1 probe, as well as the ‘rover' Zhurong, on the ground of Mars, becoming the third country to achieve this feat, after the United States and the former Soviet Union.
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