Posted at 12:00 PM ET, 10/04/2011

China space lab Tiangong-1 launched to ‘America the Beautiful’ soundtrack

China launched its first space laboratory module Thursday, called Tiangong-1, or “Heavenly Palace,” giving the country its first foothold in space, Bloomberg reports.

Computer-generated images of the Tiangong-1 space module show it docking in space. (Image via CCTV on YouTube)
It should have been a moment of national pride. The launch demonstrated China’s lead over emerging countries in rocket and docking technology, and over the U.S., which is scaling back its manned space missions and decided this year not to return to the moon.

But the made-for-TV moment was somewhat spoiled when China’s state-run broadcaster CCTV mistakenly broadcast a video about the space program to the tune of “America the Beautiful.”

Just as computer-generated images showed what the Tiangong-1 space module would look like as it docked safely in space, America’s alternate national anthem swelled to its peak.

While CCTV hasn’t explained the odd choice, the station has now reposted the video without the music.

English-language Chinese station New Tang Dynasty (NTD) Television speculates that because the track did not have lyrics, “a mix up by a CCTV employee who did not know the meaning of the song is a plausible explanation.”

Watch the original video, captured by NTDTV before it was taken down, below:

(Via Geekosystem.)

By  |  12:00 PM ET, 10/04/2011

Tags:  World, China, space, Tiangong-1

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