Shenzhou-9 manned spacecraft will return to the Earth around 10 a.m. Friday, a spokesperson of China's manned space program announced in Beijing on Thursday.
Shenzhou-9 spacecraft and Tiangong-1 lab module has been successfully separated by manual operation Thursday morning, according to the Beijing Aerospace Control Center.
It was the first time for China's spacecraft and target module to be disjoined by manual operation.
The three Chinese astronauts returned to Shenzhou-9 spacecraft from Tiangong-1 lab module at 6 a.m. Thursday, to prepare for the manual separation attempt.
Liu Wang conducted the manual operation to separate Shenzhou-9 spacecraft and the orbiting Tiangong-1. He will continue manual operation and steer the spacecraft to a safety distance.
(Xinhua News Agency June 28, 2012)