This brings us to the Tianzhou-5 cargo spacecraft, whose launching and docking with the station were witnessed in November last year, as well as its undocking in early May to leave its port for its successor. Currently, it is flying alongside the CSS and will dock with the station after the return of the Shenzhou-15 spacecraft.
These cargo ships have more critical tasks than being simple couriers for space cargo. For example, the Tianzhou-5 will provide propellants, solar power and waste storage for the station in the coming months.
The three-module and three-ship configuration will remain in place for nearly half a year until the Shenzhou-17 manned mission. Looking ahead, the CSS will expand with additional modules.