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Coué, Philippe - Jing & Chen, the ballad of Shenzhou-11 taikonauts (2020) (print)

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Jing & Chen The ballad of Shenzhou-11 taikonauts

By Philippe Coué

The flight log of the most recent Chinese manned space mission. But much more.

Through a chronological but lively, technical but fascinating account, Philippe Coué, a recognised specialist in Chinese astronautics, takes us on a 33-day journey into space with the crew of the Shenzhou-11 vessel, General Jing Haipeng and Colonel Chen Dong.

A mission of capital importance for the China's space strategy, as it validated the necessary technologies for the implementation of the future CSS/Tiangong-3 station, whose launch is imminent. The permanent operation of this orbital Earth station is an essential prerequisite for the China's declared objective of a human mission to the Moon.

Together with Jing and Chen, you will stay for a month in the small Tiangong-2 space station, resupplied by the Tianzhou freighter/spacecraft tug. You will follow their programme of scientific activities from day to day: orbital rendezvous, medicine, space horticulture, gastronomy, radiation studies, silkworm breeding, robotics, thought-based computer control...

Beyond the technical-scientific account, the author throws a clear light on the media-political coverage of the mission by Chinese officials. Some grey areas remain in the story; everything has not been revealed by the media and the Chinese administration (in particular on potentially more "military" aspects of the mission), but "Jing & Chen" constitutes a fascinating synthesis of the available information. A work never done before, with an impressive iconographic richness.

An experienced professional in the aerospace field, Philippe Coué is recognised as France's specialist in Chinese space news. He has published numerous works on the subject.

171 pages - in English - sent by registered mail

To download the digital ebook version (15 €), click here