China's cargo spacecraft docks with space station

China says an unmanned cargo spacecraft carrying supplies has successfully docked with the key module of a space station the country is building.

A rocket carrying the Tianzhou-2 was launched from the southern island of Hainan on Saturday.

China's space agency says it docked with the Tianhe module shortly after 21:00 UTC on the same day.

The Tianzhou-2 is 10 meters long and about 3.3 meters in diameter, and can carry up a payload of up to six tons.

The supplies for the astronauts include space suits for activities outside the spacecraft.

China is aiming to complete its space station by around next year, and plans to launch a spacecraft carrying three astronauts as early as next month.

Beijing is accelerating its space development efforts in a bid to become a major space power.

Last year, China brought back rocks from the moon using an unmanned explorer. Beijing also landed a probe on Mars earlier this month to carry out research.