As I blogged a few weeks ago, China's next step in the long march into space is the launch of a 3-man spacecraft. They have now taken that step.
BEIJING, Sept. 25 (Xinhua) -- Three Chinese taikonauts who blasted off on the Shenzhou-7 spacecraft told the ground control center that they felt "physically sound" in the first few minutes of the flight.
The space voyager took off at 9:10 p.m. on Thursday from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center with leaders including President Hu Jintao present seeing off the taikonauts -- Zhai Zhigang, Liu Boming and Jing Haipeng.
"The solar panel has unfolded and we feel well," one of the crew members told the Beijing control center.
The Shenzhou-7 mission, featuring a spacewalk, is China's third manned spaceflight.
A successful test with 1 man, then with two, then (hopefully) three, including a spacewalk. Liftoff, anyone?
The trouble is, only one player is playing now.