back to article China's taikonauts return from heavenly palace after 92-day mission

The first crewed mission to China's space station has ended successfully. Taikonauts Nie Haisheng, Liu Boming, and Tang Hongbo returned to Earth last week, after their Shenzhou 12 capsule descended beneath parachutes and touched the soil of Inner Mongolia. The trio spent 90 days docked at China's Tiangong space station, a …

  1. bombastic bob Silver badge
    Devil

    why aren't they going to the ISS?

    Why aren't they going to the ISS? They could have docked a similar module to the ISS and still would have their own thing going.

    I understand their desire to have their own modules and stuff, but are they avoiding the international community by having "their own" instead?

    (I'm mostly just curious)

    It's good their taikonauts returned safely though. Good job.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: why aren't they going to the ISS?

      I guess one reason might be the ISS was started 23 years ago with a 30-year lifespan, with individual modules having a 15-year one. So it's already past its date, even if said date keep being postponed. The Russians themselves don't seem very keen on keeping it running.

      Also, with their current domestic politics aimed at China, I really doubt the US would extend an invitation.

    2. knoxy

      Re: why aren't they going to the ISS?

      China have been effectively banned since 2011 when the Americans passed a law on grounds of National Security.

    3. Potemkine! Silver badge

      Re: why aren't they going to the ISS?

      I guess China doesn't like international cooperation, and wants everything to be done its way.

      For everything related to space, it's China alone. I doubt they will cooperate with Russia.

      1. Peshman

        Re: why aren't they going to the ISS?

        Would you trust the US after what they did to Huawei? Arguably the best phone manufacturer on the planet until the good 'ol US of A decided to pull Google services and tell the rest of the world to rip out any Huawei 5G gear under the guise of National Security. No proof of any backdoors into their kit has ever been found, by the way...unlike CISCO.

        The Chinese are sticking two fingers up at the US and even outclassing them in the space race. I love a good underdog story.

        Dark side of the moon? Yeah, the Chinese are there.

        Mars Rover? Yeah, they have one of those too.

        Space station? Who needs the ISS? China has a nice shiny new one of those too.

        1. Potemkine! Silver badge

          Re: why aren't they going to the ISS?

          Would you trust the US after what they did to Huawei?

          The ISS doesn't belong to the US. I stands for "International".

          And there are plenty of other space agencies in the World: ESA, JAXA, Roscosmos... I don't recall China collaborating with any of them.

          Dark side of the moon? Yeah, the Chinese are there.

          Mars Rover? Yeah, they have one of those too.

          Space station? Who needs the ISS? China has a nice shiny new one of those too

          Thank you for showing my point: China always prefers do things alone.

          1. Peshman

            Re: why aren't they going to the ISS?

            ...And thank you for proving my point!

            After getting shafted by the US and Google by adopting Android and then having Google services removed by them in a faux trade war why would you trust anyone else to have your back?

            Better to go it alone and prove that you can beat the competition at their own game.

            In a couple of years even China's silicone processor prowess will be leaving Intel and AMD behind. MediaTek and Kirin are already causing shockwaves in that space right now.

        2. ICL1900-G3 Bronze badge

          Re: why aren't they going to the ISS?

          China? Underdog? Are you absolutely sure about that?

          1. Peshman

            Re: why aren't they going to the ISS?

            Fair point, well made Sir.

      2. phuzz Silver badge

        Re: why aren't they going to the ISS?

        The US government forbids NASA from working with the Chinese space agency. Pretty much ever other space agency is happy to work with them.

      3. jgarbo

        Re: why aren't they going to the ISS?

        Keeping doubting. Saves thinking.

    4. Irongut Silver badge

      Re: why aren't they going to the ISS?

      > are they avoiding the international community

      No China are more than happy to work with the international community, they already have plans with ESA and Russia for their station. It's the USA they don't want that they don't want to work with (and can't legally thanks to US law) and who can blame them after the last 5 years.

    5. HildyJ Silver badge
      Facepalm

      Re: why aren't they going to the ISS? - China asked and were turned down

      China requested access to the ISS and, later, permission to add a module to the ISS. In both cases NASA turned them down because US Law prohibits working with the Chinese. China then decided to build there own space station.

      They are working with other countries in their space program. For example, they have offered seats on their space station to any country once it is fully operation. Before that, China offered moon samples from the Chang’e 5 mission to the international community.

      It is completely and totally the US attempt to ostracize China that has resulted in the lack of cooperation between the two.

    6. Zolko Bronze badge

      Re: why aren't they going to the ISS?

      @bob:

      the international community ...

      ... doesn't exist, and is in reality the USA meaning itself. And even there, it's actually the (crumbling) petro-dollar empire.

      1. Manx Cat
        Devil

        Re: why aren't they going to the ISS?

        My thought is that rather like the rest of the planet, they can't add Land/Islands to existing territories.

        Oh wait...

  2. Ken G
    Thumb Up

    It's nice to see activity after such a long dry spell

    Between the private US efforts, China and India, space seems to be getting focus after years of just ticking over

  3. Paul Crawford Silver badge
    Pint

    As much as I detest the behaviour of China's CCP, I will happily raise a glass to Nie Haisheng, Liu Boming, and Tang Hongbo for their achievement.

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