Skip to Content Facebook Feature Image

Shenzhou-18 crew prepares for material extravehicular exposure experiments




Shenzhou-18 crew prepares for material extravehicular exposure experiments

2024-05-18 21:01 Last Updated At:05-19 10:05

The Shenzhou-18 astronaut crew onboard China's Tiangong space station has completed the assembly, testing and second extravehicular installation of the facilities for material exposure experiments.

The China Manned Space Agency on Saturday released a video of the astronauts' work over the past week, showing them installing experimental facilities, conducing medical trainings, and performing daily fitness activities.

The three Chinese astronauts Ye Guangfu, Li Cong and Li Guangsu were sent to the orbiting Tiangong space station for a six-month mission on April 25.

The video showed the astronauts assembling and testing the tribology experiment box for solid-liquid compound lubrication, which is one of the major facilities for their scientific research task.

With this experiment box, a project will be carried out to try to realize "super-lubrication" or zero-wear in mechanical movement in the harsh space environment, and to scientifically reveal the evolution process of lubrication and the damage mechanism of lubricating materials in the real space environment.

In addition, the three astronauts also replaced samples in the experiment cavity of the containerless material laboratory cabinet and maintained the axial mechanism.

Previously, a number of key research projects had been carried out in the containerless cabinet, and many batches of experimental samples had been brought back to Earth for further tests and researches.

While carrying out scientific experiments and maintenance of experimental devices as planned, the three astronauts also completed a number of tasks including environmental monitoring of the space station and on-orbit training for medical rescue.

On-orbit medical check is key to ensure the health and safety of astronauts. Since entering orbit more than half a month ago, the crew has carried out various medical checks such as mass measurement and intraocular pressure and funduscopic examination.

The advanced medical system based on the space station, which includes traditional Chinese medical four-diagnostic auxiliary apparatus and modern medical technologies, has provided the astronauts with more accurate health management, and help ground researchers monitor the astronauts' physical conditions.

Astronauts in space face a series of physiological challenges brought about by the microgravity environment, including changes in the cardiovascular system, muscle atrophy and bone density loss. The Shenzhou-18 astronauts have performed regular weightlessness protection exercises, such as treadmill training and resistance training, so as to maintain good physical condition for the half-year mission.

Shenzhou-18 crew prepares for material extravehicular exposure experiments

Shenzhou-18 crew prepares for material extravehicular exposure experiments

China continues to optimize the energy consumption structure, and promote green and low-carbon development to a new height, said a senior official in Beijing on Thursday.

Since the 18th Communist Party of China (CPC) National Congress in 2012, China has made a new leap in the level of energy security and stable supply, while continuously optimizing the energy consumption structure, said Zhang Jianhua, director of the National Energy Administration.

From 2013 to 2023, the total production of primary energy rose 35 percent. The installed wind power generation capacity increased by nearly five times, and the installed photovoltaic power generation capacity increased by over 30 times, said Zhang.

The official also said that China has established the world's largest charging infrastructure system. Over the course of 10 years, the proportion of coal consumption has dropped by 12.1 percentage points, while the proportion of consumption in non-fossil fuel sources such as wind power, solar power, hydropower, and nuclear power has increased by 7.7 percentage points. As a result, the "green content" of economic development has significantly improved.

So far, China is one of the world's advanced countries in terms of energy technology modernization.

In the future, the country will coordinate energy security and low-carbon transformation, reduce the consumption of fossil fuel energy, and continuously promote the transformation and upgrading of energy utilization.

Meanwhile, China is intensifying its efforts in the development of non-fossil energy, while coordinating the advancement of nuclear power, hydropower, and new energy development and utilization, aiming to promote high-quality development of energy.

"By 2025, approximately 12 million charging facilities will be established nationwide. Efforts will be made to increase the electrification level of end-use energy to around 30 percent by 2025. We will continue to expand the scale of green electricity consumption and increase the proportion of non-fossil energy consumption by one percentage point every year," said Zhang.

China continues to optimize energy consumption structure, promote green, low-carbon development

China continues to optimize energy consumption structure, promote green, low-carbon development

Recommended Articles