The cover plate of the container loading Long March-5 rocket, China's largest carrier rocket, is being removed from ship Yuanwang-21 at Qinglan Port in Wenchang, south China's Hainan Province, Sept. 1, 2016. (Xinhua/Guo Cheng)
NANJING, Feb. 26 (Xinhua) -- Two Chinese rocket-carrying ships returned to the port of China Satellite Maritime Tracking and Controlling Department Wednesday after missions of transporting the Long March rockets.
The Yuanwang-21 set out on Dec. 30, 2019, and completed a maritime transport of the Long March-7A rocket, a new generation of China's medium-sized high-orbit rocket.
Afterward, the ship worked together with the Yuanwang-22 to transport the Long March-5B Y1 rocket to the launch site in southern China's Hainan Province. The rocket is expected to make its maiden flight carrying the prototype of China's new manned spaceship in April.
"The Yuanwang 21 set a record with a 59-day voyage sailing more than 8,000 nautical miles in a single mission," said Li Jin, captain of the carrying ship.
The two Yuanwang ships are China's first ships made exclusively to carry rockets.
Crew members of the two ships will examine facilities and conducted rehearsals, preparing for intensive rocket transport missions this year. ■