According to Xinhua News Agency, an experimental reusable spacecraft launched by China two days ago has successfully returned to the designated location on Sunday. This is a breakthrough that may reduce the cost of traveling to and from space.

The mission has been kept low-key, and the official media has not yet released photos or videos of the launch and landing of the spacecraft. No detailed information about the tested technology was provided.

Chinese social media speculation about this spacecraft is everywhere. Some commentators compared it with the X-37B of the U.S. Air Force. The X-37B is a self-driving space shuttle manufactured by Boeing that can be in orbit. Stay for a long time, and then fly back to Earth on its own.

Three years ago, China stated that it would launch a spacecraft that can fly like an airplane in 2020 and can be reused, thereby increasing the launch frequency and reducing mission costs.

It is unknown whether the experimental spacecraft launched by China is a fixed-wing spacecraft like the US Space Shuttle. If it is similar to the X-37B, then it is about one-fifth the size of the space shuttle.

The Long March 2F deployed the Chinese spacecraft to orbit on Friday. This series of rockets has transported the Shenzhou spacecraft to orbit in the form of manned and unloaded missions for many years.

In 2003, a Chinese citizen entered space on his own for the first time in a spacecraft.

© Thomson Reuters 2020

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