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Thread: China Space Station

  1. #61
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    Quote Originally Posted by selvaarchi View Post
    A picture of the model then
    Well, you did say picture. So unless the picture is just a picture of a model then...

  2. #62
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    The article is on Long March 7. The main news being 1st flight has slipped again to 2016. The reason I am posting it in this thread is the line stating Tiangong-2 will be launched this year.
    This then means we can look forward to the Chinese manned flights next year. One if not two of them.

    How long will they spend in the lab. Certainly longer then on Tiangong-1. I would speculate one to three months.

    http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/vi..._133893628.htm


    The unmanned cargo vehicle will transport supplies to and refuel China's future manned space station. The first launch of the Long March-7 and the cargo spacecraft is expected to be around 2016, to serve the Tiangong-2 space laboratory, which is planned to be in orbit by the end of this year.
    Last edited by selvaarchi; 2015-Jan-16 at 05:49 AM.
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  3. #63
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    Quote Originally Posted by selvaarchi View Post
    The article is on Long March 7. The main news being 1st flight has slipped again to 2016. The reason I am posting it in this thread is the line stating Tiangong-2 will be launched this year.
    This then means we can look forward to the Chinese manned flights next year. One if not two of them.
    Interesting, because 2 months ago, they had pushed the T2 to 2016 and the cargo craft to 2017.
    There's a lot of references to the 2016 date, and this is the first mention of 2015. I think I'll wait for a longer article before making any comment.

  4. #64
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    Quote Originally Posted by NEOWatcher View Post
    Interesting, because 2 months ago, they had pushed the T2 to 2016 and the cargo craft to 2017.
    There's a lot of references to the 2016 date, and this is the first mention of 2015. I think I'll wait for a longer article before making any comment.
    Agreed. Let us wait for their next move. When they announced the delay of T2, I thought it would be launched by the Long March 5 but looks like, they would still be using the Long March 2. This means the T2 will be about the same size to the T1

  5. #65
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    Quote Originally Posted by selvaarchi View Post
    Agreed. Let us wait for their next move. When they announced the delay of T2, I thought it would be launched by the Long March 5 but looks like, they would still be using the Long March 2. This means the T2 will be about the same size to the T1
    I am more confident that the article is using old speculations. I find it hard to believe that they would scale T2 down from it's 20000kg configuration back down to a T1 sized craft this late in the game.
    Unless... they are going to slip another T2 into the program after this... or move the planned T2 component as part of the T3.

    If it's one of the latter, I also wonder if T1 has something to do with it. It was supposed to be de-orbited after the last mission which was over a year ago. It's possible that it might still be carrying out autonomous experiments that they want to continue. And with the T1 in a state where it will have to be de-orbited, maybe they are trying other possibilities.

    Like we agree... we'll have to wait.

  6. #66
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    Here is some information I picked from the kerbalspaceprogram.com forum posted by xenomorph555. Has anyone got a link to that interview?

    "Tiangong-2 will carry a closed cycle ecosystem experiment + more

    An interview with China's space station chief designer was given today. He gave some some information on T-2 which I will go over quickly;

    Currently on target.
    Launching in May or June 2016.
    It will launch after the first LM-7 launch in April 2016 which will carry a mockup Tianzhou.
    It will be followed by Shenzhou-11 most likely in July.
    It contains a smaller version of T-3's life support system, this is much more regenerative and closed then T-1's and will mean that S-11 could stay for up to a month.
    S-12/13 will stay for longer, possibly up to 2-3 months.
    Will carry a new two-way docking port.

    However the most important thing he mentioned was that T-2 will carry a small prototype, biological closed cycle life support system based of the Yuegong-1 system, now it should be noted that the system is small and won't support the crew. It is merely an experiment for a larger life support system for T-3 or T-4. It is made up of only plants (no insects yet) and is hoped in the future it will be able to generate oxygen, remove CO2 and generate food.


    Overall progress is good, I do hope for success with the Closed cycle system though. "

  7. #67
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    Found the link to the above in Chinese English paper Xinhua. Does not mention anything about "a smaller version of T-3's life support system, this is much more regenerative and closed then T-1's" but that could be the reporting.

    http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/20..._134046187.htm

    China will send a cargo ship into the space in 2016 to dock with a future space module scheduled to be launched earlier the same year, a leading Chinese space scientist said Friday.

    The Tianzhou-1, which literally means "heavenly vessel", will carry propellants, living necessities for astronauts, research facilities and repair equipment to China's second orbiting space lab Tiangong-2, said Zhou Jianping, chief engineer of China's manned space program.

    Cargo transportation system is a key technology China must master and make breakthroughs to build its own space station, said Zhou who is also a member of the National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference, the country's top political advisory body.

  8. #68
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    Quote Originally Posted by selvaarchi View Post
    Found the link to the above in Chinese English paper Xinhua. Does not mention anything about "a smaller version of T-3's life support system, this is much more regenerative and closed then T-1's" but that could be the reporting.
    It doesn't mention life support at all.

    But I did find this article that mentions T2* as being a test for life support technologies. To me, that doesn't say "smaller version" since they are still working on the technologies.

    *They say T1, but I'm confident because of the dates, and the fact that it was a T1 backup that they were talking about T2.

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    Quote Originally Posted by NEOWatcher View Post
    It doesn't mention life support at all.

    But I did find this article that mentions T2* as being a test for life support technologies. To me, that doesn't say "smaller version" since they are still working on the technologies.

    *They say T1, but I'm confident because of the dates, and the fact that it was a T1 backup that they were talking about T2.
    I am taking that from the info from "kerbalspaceprogram.com", I posted on message #66. All other information tellies and that is why I reckon it is the reporter that has not reported the entire interview. Even the report that you highlighted seems to be from the same interview and it has some info on life support systems.

  10. #70
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    Quote Originally Posted by selvaarchi View Post
    I am taking that from the info from "kerbalspaceprogram.com", I posted on message #66.
    I consider a video game site very low on the list of trusted information.

  11. #71
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    Quote Originally Posted by NEOWatcher View Post
    I consider a video game site very low on the list of trusted information.
    I would agree with you normally but in this case it contained highlights of the interview before any of the other sites reported it.
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  12. #72
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    Quote Originally Posted by NEOWatcher View Post
    I am more confident that the article is using old speculations. I find it hard to believe that they would scale T2 down from it's 20000kg configuration back down to a T1 sized craft this late in the game.
    Unless... they are going to slip another T2 into the program after this... or move the planned T2 component as part of the T3.

    If it's one of the latter, I also wonder if T1 has something to do with it. It was supposed to be de-orbited after the last mission which was over a year ago. It's possible that it might still be carrying out autonomous experiments that they want to continue. And with the T1 in a state where it will have to be de-orbited, maybe they are trying other possibilities.

    Like we agree... we'll have to wait.
    This report in "space daily " confirms Tianzho-2 will be launched by a LM5.

    http://www.spacedaily.com/m/reports/...e_lab_999.html

    Research on the Long March-5 carrier rocket - to be used to lift the Tiangong-2 lab into space - Tiangong-2's payload, and selection of astronauts for the mission are currently "progressing in an orderly manner," Zhou said.
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  13. #73
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    Dr Morris Jones writing in Space Daily gives his take on T2.

    Disagree with his view that " Tiangong 2 is a tiny laboratory module, using the same basic design as Tiangong 1". T1 is only 8.5 tons. T2 is 20 tons. T1 had the Chinese astronauts for 15 days. T2 is supposed to support them for one to three months. All in all I see T2 as a stepping stone to their permanent space station.

    http://www.spacedaily.com/m/reports/...oaked_999.html

    The recent release of another update on Tiangong 2, China's next space laboratory, has prompted a lot of attention. A recent tightening of Chinese media policies has made this relatively obscured program even more difficult to decipher, and anything we get through official channels is examined closely. We are starving for more information, but sadly, China's latest serving offers little more than crumbs.

    China has essentially confirmed that Tiangong 2 is generally on-track. That's probably the most important lesson from the slim media release that circulated in China's state-run media. Tiangong 2 is still set to launch at some time in 2016.

    It will receive a crewed visit from the Shenzhou 11 spacecraft, and then a docking with China's first cargo supply spacecraft, Tianzhou 1. Ironically, the cargo spacecraft is larger than the Tiangong laboratory itself. But that's understandable. Tianzhou is really designed to service the large future Chinese Space Station, which also seems to be on track in its development.
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  14. #74
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    Quote Originally Posted by selvaarchi View Post
    Disagree with his view that " Tiangong 2 is a tiny laboratory module, using the same basic design as Tiangong 1". T1 is only 8.5 tons. T2 is 20 tons. T1 had the Chinese astronauts for 15 days. T2 is supposed to support them for one to three months. All in all I see T2 as a stepping stone to their permanent space station.
    That's a matter of perspective. I wouldn't use the word "tiny" myself, but it is small. T2 is the same basic design (with enhancements) in a larger shell. As a stand alone module, it's still small in relation to other space station designs (although there's not a lot of examples). It's about the same as the Salyut stations.

  15. #75
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    Just came across this article from 18th months ago. It gives us an insight into China’s space station objectives.

    http://spacenews.com/38131china-unve...esearch-plans/

    The life science experiment racks include a greenhouse for studies on plants and seeds, with a small 1-gravity centrifuge inside. The second life sciences rack can house mice, fruit flies, nematodes and other small animals.
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    Do not know if this is the reporter misreporting in this recent repot. But I do agree with the statement !!! - "China is currently building its very own space station, the Tiangong 2 space lab, which is expected to become fully operational by 2022."

    The statement implies that Tiangong 2 will the first segment of their future space station. Is that realistic? Let us look at what Tiangong 2 has to offer. According to Wikipedia its specifications are -

    Crew size: 3, with 20 days of life support resources.[5]
    Length: 14.4 metres (47 ft).[2]
    Maximum diameter: 4.2 metres (14 ft).[2]
    Mass: 20,000 kilograms (44,000 lb).[2]

    add to this we now know it will have two docking ports - one at each end. According to NEOWatcher's post #68 it is "multi-cabin with a large capacity and high power". meaning it will have accommodation for 3 astronauts and generate all the power they require.It will also be equipped with with a French instrument, Cardiospace, to measure astronauts circulation. This implies the station will be equipped with a mini gym for the astronauts.

    With all these why would anyone abandon this prime estate in LEO after only two years of use. I expect to see it attached to the Tiangong 3 and the whole space station to come to 80 tons at least by 2022. Would love to hear any comments to this.
    Last edited by selvaarchi; 2015-Jun-23 at 06:33 AM.

  17. #77
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    Quote Originally Posted by selvaarchi View Post
    Do not know if this is the reporter misreporting in this recent repot. But I do agree with the statement !!! - "China is currently building its very own space station, the Tiangong 2 space lab, which is expected to become fully operational by 2022."
    I think the reporter is missing something. I believe he is talking about Tiangong 3 because of the operational date. It's either a typo, or he's mashing his facts with the T2.

    Quote Originally Posted by selvaarchi View Post
    The statement implies that Tiangong 2 will the first segment of their future space station. Is that realistic? Let us look at what Tiangong 2 has to offer. According to Wikipedia its specifications are -
    Even if it will be the first module of T3, when it's operational it will still be T3. To combine the statement of operational with T2 doesn't make sense to me.

    Quote Originally Posted by selvaarchi View Post
    With all these why would anyone abandon this prime estate in LEO after only two years of use. I expect to see it attached to the Tiangong 3 and the whole space station to come to 80 tons at least by 2022. Would love to hear any comments to this.
    Everything I've read in the past indicate T3 is all new modules. If so, then my guess for abandoning it would be that T2 is a testbed for T3. Therefore, there would be a lot of unnecessary, possible incompatibilities in systems, or even just too much work to integrate them into a new system.

    The 10x accuracy is true for the current GPS, but the US is also in the process of GPS III, which will bring the accuracy down as well.

    The one thing I disagree with in this article is:
    China is now ready to take the first big step that would hopefully position itself as one of the world's credible space-exploring powers.
    I think they are a credible space-exploring power now.
    The new system will be a big change for their military, I don't think it changes things much for the space program itself.

  18. #78
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    Quote Originally Posted by NEOWatcher View Post
    Even if it will be the first module of T3, when it's operational it will still be T3. To combine the statement of operational with T2 doesn't make sense to me.

    Everything I've read in the past indicate T3 is all new modules. If so, then my guess for abandoning it would be that T2 is a testbed for T3. Therefore, there would be a lot of unnecessary, possible incompatibilities in systems, or even just too much work to integrate them into a new system.
    I expect T3 to be a new module.

    What I am questioning is why not attach the T2 module to it. Just like this year we will be attaching a Bigelow module to the ISS. The Bigelow module will be an empty shell that the ISS astronauts will use for R&R.

    T2 comes fully equipped to support 3 astronauts, so the combined T2 & T3 modules will be able to support 6 astronauts.

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    Quote Originally Posted by selvaarchi View Post
    What I am questioning is why not attach the T2 module to it.
    I did give some possible reasons.

    Quote Originally Posted by selvaarchi View Post
    Just like this year we will be attaching a Bigelow module to the ISS. The Bigelow module will be an empty shell that the ISS astronauts will use for R&R.
    The Bigelow module is designed for integration into the space station. We don't know how compatible T2 and T3 are.

    Quote Originally Posted by selvaarchi View Post
    T2 comes fully equipped to support 3 astronauts, so the combined T2 & T3 modules will be able to support 6 astronauts.
    Possible, but since we don't know the specs and how the systems are designed, it's hard to know if they would work together well. Plus; we don't know if T2 is designed to last more than a few years.

    It does sound like a logical step, but we'll just have to wait and see if they say anything.

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    Hi selvaarchi,

    If indeed the previous version is not to be used then it may be a prototype for testing different technologies. Most design and other resources would go towards the later version. Probably a question of economics.

    I tend to agree that China is a credible space explorer. India's achievements are also major league. And there's Japan. And they are all ambitious. All this bodes well for space exploration in general.

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    Also, I just responded to the Long March thread that T2 may not be the station that people were speculating it is.
    If it is just an extended T1, then it might not have the lifespan to stay permanently docked to a new station.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 7cscb View Post
    Hi selvaarchi,

    If indeed the previous version is not to be used then it may be a prototype for testing different technologies. Most design and other resources would go towards the later version. Probably a question of economics.

    I tend to agree that China is a credible space explorer. India's achievements are also major league. And there's Japan. And they are all ambitious. All this bodes well for space exploration in general.
    To me T1 was the prototype and T2 to test out the life support systems for extended stays. Even if they do find problems with it, they could upgrade it and not throw the T2 away.

    Agree with you on India and Japan. Also ESA - as the incoming boss has said he wants to be able to launch his own astronauts within 5 years. The future certainly looks much brighter for space exploration then it has been for the last 3 decades.

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    Quote Originally Posted by NEOWatcher View Post
    Also, I just responded to the Long March thread that T2 may not be the station that people were speculating it is.
    If it is just an extended T1, then it might not have the lifespan to stay permanently docked to a new station.
    Have replied in the LM-5 thread by pointing you to an article that says T2 is 20 tons.

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    Another article from Dr Morris Jones on "Progress for Tiangong 2". Find it disappointing as I am not on agreement with a lot of what he says.

    1st he expects the Tiangong 2 to be launched by a Long March 2F/G rocket. This implies Tiangong 2 will be much smaller then we have been speculation. To me Tiangong 2 all reports so far indicate it will be launched by a LM5 and the module to be about 20 tons.

    He then expects it to only receive one crew of three. We have been talking of up to three set of crews. Love to hear your opinions.

    http://www.spacedaily.com/reports/Pr...ong_2_999.html

    Let's recap what we know. Tiangong 2 will use the same basic module as the Tiangong 1 space laboratory, a small cabin with sleeping quarters for two astronauts. There will probably be few visible differences on the inside or the outside of the laboratory, but there will be changes. The most important one will be a new regenerative life support system.

    Other changes seem likely when the lessons of Tiangong 1 are incorporated, but overall, Tiangong 2 will probably represent a fairly incremental evolution in design. The floor of the module could be changed, and there could be some visible differences there. Astronauts on the first expedition experienced problems, and the second expedition took up some new panels to correct them. China may also choose to modify the docking system, but it will probably look the same as it did on Tiangong 1.

    As with Tiangong 1, Tiangong 2 will be launched by a Long March 2F/G rocket, a modified version of the rocket used to launch Chinese astronauts.

    Only one crew expedition will fly to Tiangong 2, unlike the two expeditions that occupied Tiangong 1. The astronauts will launch on the Shenzhou 11 spacecraft, and there will probably be three of them. The mission commander will probably be a veteran astronaut, and at least one of the other astronauts will be a rookie. Most probably, there will be two rookies on the crew.

  25. #85
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    Quote Originally Posted by selvaarchi View Post
    Love to hear your opinions.
    I've been relatively quiet about this since it's all been speculation so far. But; since you ask...
    Let me remind you of my reasoning.

    You did come back with another article (which I didn't reply because I didn't want to derail the LM thread). But; that article was not a quote. It was a statement by a reporter.

    This latest article makes sense to me.
    T1 was their bold effort to create a first generation space station.
    T2 is the intermediate step to test technologies for their next space station while they ramp up the technology needed to build that next one.

    But one thing in that article that does make me scratch my head is this( and following comments):
    But some mysteries remain. What is the fate of the originally proposed Tiangong 3 laboratory, which was expected to use a larger module? Will China drop Tiangong 3 from its plans and proceed directly to launching the large Chinese Space Station?
    From all recent discussions, the "large Chinese Space Station" IS T3. I wonder if his confusion is that the lab is not the entire T3, but just the first component.

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    Quote Originally Posted by NEOWatcher View Post
    I've been relatively quiet about this since it's all been speculation so far. But; since you ask...
    Let me remind you of my reasoning.

    You did come back with another article (which I didn't reply because I didn't want to derail the LM thread). But; that article was not a quote. It was a statement by a reporter.

    This latest article makes sense to me.
    T1 was their bold effort to create a first generation space station.
    T2 is the intermediate step to test technologies for their next space station while they ramp up the technology needed to build that next one.
    It still does not make sense. T2 is supposed to have 2 ports. He says the cargo craft will only dock after the manned flight has left. Why have two ports and not test both docking at the same time. More logical to have both docking at the same time and work out the logistics of managing it. Also T2 has supplies for 20 days so a one month stay he talked about is not possible.

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    Quote Originally Posted by selvaarchi View Post
    It still does not make sense. T2 is supposed to have 2 ports. He says the cargo craft will only dock after the manned flight has left. Why have two ports and not test both docking at the same time. More logical to have both docking at the same time and work out the logistics of managing it. Also T2 has supplies for 20 days so a one month stay he talked about is not possible.
    Maybe they'll take the weekends off.
    As above, so below

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    Quote Originally Posted by selvaarchi View Post
    It still does not make sense. T2 is supposed to have 2 ports. He says the cargo craft will only dock after the manned flight has left. Why have two ports and not test both docking at the same time. More logical to have both docking at the same time and work out the logistics of managing it. Also T2 has supplies for 20 days so a one month stay he talked about is not possible.
    Well; he did say that the plans for T2 and cargo craft are unclear. It's possible that the first crew is the only one made public for now, or the only one with firm plans.
    I find it hard to believe that they would only use the station for one crew for only a couple of months. There's still a few years to go before T3 starts to go up.

    It's possible that they are allowing for more missions dependent on early experience with the module.

    There's also a small possibility that it's part of testing a design for two ports, or even just as a backup for redundancy.

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    Quote Originally Posted by NEOWatcher View Post
    Well; he did say that the plans for T2 and cargo craft are unclear. It's possible that the first crew is the only one made public for now, or the only one with firm plans.
    I find it hard to believe that they would only use the station for one crew for only a couple of months. There's still a few years to go before T3 starts to go up.

    It's possible that they are allowing for more missions dependent on early experience with the module.

    There's also a small possibility that it's part of testing a design for two ports, or even just as a backup for redundancy.
    The ports also is one of my question marks on the Dr.'s report. He says "China may also choose to modify the docking system, but it will probably look the same as it did on Tiangong 1.". This makes me believe he is working with old information. China had already announced to the world that they will be using their new "eye" in T2's docking system (see article below).

    http://www.chinatopix.com/articles/5...nce-system.htm

    According to Reuters, in hopes of creating a docking system that is efficient and safer, Chinese scientists formulated the "eye" guidance system. This technology is so advanced, spacecraft traveling faster than bullets by up to eight times can still dock safely on a vessel in outer space.

    The "eye" will be used by China for its second orbiting outer space lab, called the Tiangong 2. It is also expected to be of good use when China finally launches a permanently manned space station in space.

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    Quote Originally Posted by selvaarchi View Post
    The ports also is one of my question marks on the Dr.'s report. He says "China may also choose to modify the docking system, but it will probably look the same as it did on Tiangong 1.".
    The modification is in the guidance system, not the docking hardware. So; certainly, it most likely will look the same, the difference is in how it "looks at" the craft.

    Just musing, but there might be a remote possibility that they are using the new guidance on one port while leaving the other port unchanged. After all, this craft is a test.

    Quote Originally Posted by selvaarchi View Post
    This makes me believe he is working with old information.
    He did say "may modify", so I'm sure he has some doubts about the actual modification. But; I do agree that he doesn't have a full understanding of what is happening because of his comments about T3. Besides, this article about the eye was posted today. Why would he have known when he wrote the article?

    Quote Originally Posted by selvaarchi View Post
    (see article below)

    Oh, I hate when they use orbital speed when talking about docking. It's important for establishing a rendezvous trajectory, but not for docking.

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