Second test flight of the Shenzhou spacecraft, without crew on board. A monkey, a dog, and a rabbit were carried in a test of the spaceship's life support systems. There were also 64 different scientific payloads, including a microgravity crystallography experiment; animal species including six mice, small aquatic and terrestrial organisms; cosmic ray and particle detectors and gamma-ray burst detectors. To test the radio transmitting systems taped messages were broadcast from the spacecraft. During return to Earth the parachutes failed to open upon re-entry, which resulted in a hard landing of the descent capsule.
The Long March 2F is a Chinese orbital carrier rocket, part of the Long March 2 rocket family. Designed to launch the crewed Shenzhou spacecraft, the Long March 2F is a human-rated two-stage version of the Long March 2E rocket, which in turn was based on the Long March 2C launch vehicle. It is launched from complex SLS at the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center.
Inside the reentry capsule were a monkey, a dog and a rabbit in a test of the spaceship's life support systems. The reentry module separated from the rest of the spacecraft after just over seven days in orbit, with the orbital module staying in orbit for another 220 days.Shenzhou Details
The China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC) is the main contractor for the Chinese space program. It is state-owned and has a number of subordinate entities which design, develop and manufacture a range of spacecraft, launch vehicles, strategic and tactical missile systems, and ground equipment. It was officially established in July 1999 as part of a Chinese government reform drive, having previously been one part of the former China Aerospace Corporation. Various incarnations of the program date back to 1956.INFO WIKI