China on Thursday (Apr 29) launched the first module of its new space station, state television set showed, a milestone in Beijing's ambitious intend to place a everlasting human occurrence in space.
The Tianhe core module, which houses life support equipment and a living space for astronauts, was launched from Wenchang in China's tropical Hainan province on a Long-March 5B rocket.
The area station is likely to become fully operational in 2022 after about 10 missions to talk about more parts and assemble them in orbit.
Billions of dollars have already been poured into space exploration as China seeks to say its rising global stature and growing technological might, following in the footsteps of america and Russia.
Live footage from state broadcaster CCTV showed space programme employees cheering as the rocket powered its way through the atmosphere billowing flames from the launch site.
Once completed, the Chinese space station is likely to stay in low Earth orbit at between 400km and 450km above Earth for 15 years.
While China will not intend to use its space station for international cooperation on the scale of the ISS, Beijing has said it really is open to foreign collaboration without giving information on the scope of this cooperation.
The united states has come quite a distance since its first satellite in 1970. It put the first Chinese "taikonaut" in space in 2003 and sent a probe into Mars' orbit earlier this season.
China launched the Tiangong-1 lab, its first prototype module designed to lay the groundwork for the permanent station, in September 2011.