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Tiangong 2, 3 (TG 2, 3)

Tiangong 1 [CMSA]

Tiangong 2 (TG 2) is the second Chinese experimental space station.

The back-up built for Tiangong 1, has been modified with improved living conditions to verify key technologies, such as on-orbit propellant resupply using the new Tianzhou logistics vehicle. The station is also equipped with a new robotic arm.

Tiangong-2 carries 14 types of experiments focusing on cutting-edge technologies such as space materials science and space life science.

  • The world’s first-ever in-space cold atomic fountain clock;
  • Space-Earth quantum key distribution and laser communications experiment to be used in conjunction with the Mozi Quantum Science Satellite;
  • the POLAR Gamma ray detector;
  • Liquid bridge thermocapillary convection experiment;
  • Space material experiment;
  • Space plant growth experiment;
  • Multi-angle wide-spectral imager;
  • Multi-spectral limb imaging spectrometer;
  • Stereoscopic microwave altimeter;

The station carries also the small Banxing-2 satellite for technology demonstrations and to capture images of the new station in orbit.

Tiangong 2 was launched on a CZ-2F/T rocket in September 2016 into an initial 197 km × 373 km, 42.8° orbit, which it later raised to a 369 km × 378 km, 42.8° orbit.

Only one crewed ship, Shenzhou 11, visited this station. Also the uncrewed Tianzhou 1 prototype supply vessel visited the station.

On 19 July 2019, Tiangong-2 was deorbited over the south Pacific and burned up mostly in the earth's atmosphere.

A back up, Tiangong 3, has been built, but was put into storage and never launched.

Missions to Tiangong-2 and crew list.

Nation: China
Type / Application: Space station
Operator: CNSA
Power: 2 deployable solar arrays, batteries
Mass: 8500 kg
Satellite COSPAR Date LS Launch Vehicle Remarks
Tiangong 2 (TG 2) 2016-057A 15.09.2016 Jq LC-43/90 CZ-2F/T with BanXing 2
Further Tiangong missions:

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