China stakes its claim on high frontier with launch of space lab

China has moved a step forward in its ambitious pursuit of building a permanent space station, with the successful launch of its Tiangong 2 experimental space lab into orbit on Thursday night.

Carrying Tiangong 2, a Long March 2F rocket blasted off at 10.04pm from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Centre deep in the Gobi Desert in northwestern China, ahead of being sent into orbit roughly 10 minutes later, according to a live broadcast on China Central TV.

Tiangong means “heavenly palace” in Putonghua. Continue reading