A “mysterious” Chinese spacecraft, which had been in orbit for 276 days, has returned to Earth, according to state media citing the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Centre.
The reusable experimental spacecraft had been launched on August 5, 2022, from northwest China’s Jiuquan Satellite Launch Centre. However, the Chinese government has not provided any details about the craft’s design or what technologies were being tested.
Similarly, no images of the spacecraft have been released.
The mission is a breakthrough for China’s reusable spacecraft technology research, which could have a range of applications such as space tourism, transporting astronauts, resupplying space stations, and placing satellites into orbit at a lower cost.
The previous trial vehicle’s orbital test was carried out in September 2020, traveling for nearly two days in orbit.