Astronaut welcomes China to space brotherhood

By REUTERS
July 15, 2011 20:35

 
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HOUSTON - A US astronaut on the final shuttle mission said on Friday China's first space station will be a welcome addition to the orbital brotherhood.

"China being in space I think is a great thing. The more nations that get into space, the better cooperation we'll have with each," Atlantis astronaut Rex Walheim said during an in-flight interview with Reuters.

"Space is one of the biggest international brotherhoods we have."

The first module of China's planned Tiangong-I space station arrived at its Gobi Desert launch site on June 29, the Xinhua news agency reported. It is scheduled to fly later this year on a Long March rocket and is to be visited by Chinese astronauts -- known as taikonauts -- next year.

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