Equipment developed by the Changchun Institute of Optics, Fine Mechanics and Physics (CIOMP), Chinese Academy of Sciences, helped to ensure the timely location and safe retrieval of the return capsule of the Shenzhou 12 manned spacecraft.
The return capsule, carrying Chinese astronauts Nie Haisheng, Liu Boming and Tang Hongbo, made touch down at the Dongfeng landing site at 13:34, September 17, 2021.
It marked the successful completion of the Shenzhou 12 manned mission, which involved the three taikonauts spending three months in the Tianhe Space Station, a major breakthrough for China’s space program.
Airborne optoelectronic search equipment and ground-based optical measurement equipment developed by CIOMP were crucial to the search, identification and location of the return capsule. Working together, they provided clear images of the entire landing process and helped retrieval crew to quickly locate and aid the returning taikonauts.