Space race or cosmic cooperation? China strongly calls for the latter

 

 

 

 

Chinese Vice President Li Yuanchao (2nd from right) attends the opening ceremony of the

2017 Global Space Exploration Conference in Beijing on June 6, 2017.   Photo by Zhang Ling

 

Johann-Dietrich Woerner, Director General of the European Space Agency, makes

a keynote speech during the 2017 Global Space Exploration Conference in Beijing

on June 6, 2017.    Photo by Chen Yehua

 

Yang Liwei, China’s first astronaut and deputy director of China’s manned space program

office, makes a speech during the 2017 Global Space Exploration Conference in Beijing,

on June 6, 2017.   Photo by Chen Yehua

 

Wu Ji, director of the National Space Science Center under the Chinese Academy of

Sciences (CAS), delivers a speech at a plenary meeting during the 2017 Global Space

Exploration Conference in Beijing on June 6, 2017.    Photo by Cheng Yehua

 

Liu Shiquan, vice president of China Aesospace Science & Industry Crop., delivers

a speech at a plenary meeting during the 2017 Global Space Exploration Conference

in Beijing on June 6, 2017.   Photo by Chen Yehua

 

Wu Yanhua (3rd from right), vice director of China National Space Administration,

poses for a group photo with cooperative partners during the 2017 Global Space

Exploration Conference in Beijing on June 6, 2017.   Photo by Chen Yehua

 

 

 

 

BEIJING  |   2017-06-07 14:22:15

 

Space race or cosmic cooperation?

China strongly

calls for the latter

 

By Liu Lu Quan Xiaoshu, Yu Fei and Zuo Wei

 

 

 

Yang Liwei (2nd from left of second row ), China’s first astronaut and deputy 

director of China’s manned space program office, and American former

astronaut Buzz Aldrin (3rd from left of second row) attend the opening

ceremony of the 2017 Global Space Exploration Conference in Beijing

on June 6, 2017.   Photo by Zhang Ling

 

Chinese astronaut Wang Yaping (center) talks with children during an event

on the 2017 Global Space Exploration Conference in Beijing on June 6, 2017.  

Photo by Zhang Ling

 

 American former astronaut Buzz Aldrin (1st from right of  front row) talks

with attendants during the 2017 Global Space Exploration Conference

in Beijing on June 6, 2017.    Photo by Zhang Ling

 

 

China is looking towards increased cooperation with international space leaders, it stressed on Tuesday of June 6 at the Global Space Exploration Conference (GLEX 2017) currently being held in Beijing.

In a letter of congratulations sent to the conference by Chinese President Xi Jinping, he said that China wants to enhance cooperation with the international community in peaceful space exploration and development.

Xi noted that progress in space science and technology will benefit people around the world and China wants to use space exploration achievements to create a better future for mankind.

“China is expanding cooperation with the United Nations (UN) in space exploration, and will disclose projects later this year,” said Yang Liwei, China’s first astronaut and current deputy director of the China Manned Space Engineering Office.

The country has previously undertaken bilateral cooperation with various countries and institutions and is now looking towards multilateral projects. China will carry out joint projects with the UN Office of Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA) including astronaut training, space station scientific experiments and multilateral application of such experiments, said Yang.

“Rather than a space race, I think cooperation is always good and worldwide cooperation is even better. I hope we can breach Earth’s crises by having worldwide cooperation in space,” said Jan Woerner, director general of the European Space Agency (ESA).

“We should not try to duplicate everything, and if we join forces we can do even more with the same amount of money,” he added.

The conference, which ends Thursday, was jointly held by the International Astronautical Federation (IAF) and the Chinese Society of Astronautics and follows the GLEX 2012 conference held in Washington D.C.

International space engineers and delegates from leading aerospace companies including Boeing, Lockheed Martin and Airbus attended the conference.

 

 

SPACE ODYSSEY

 

Although China has completed many successful space exploration projects, the country’s space expeditions are far from over.

At the conference, Yang said that China plans to use a Long March-5 carrier rocket to launch the core module of the country’s manned space station in 2019 and build a space station around 2022.

With the International Space Station set to retire in 2024, the Chinese space station will offer a promising alternative, and China will be the only country with a permanent space station.

China National Space Administration (CNSA) held a ceremony to recognize and thank the ESA and four countries, namely the Netherlands, Germany, Saudi Arabia and Sweden, for their participation in the Chang’e-4 lunar exploration to the far side of the moon which will be launched in 2018.

Liu Jizhong, director of the CNSA’s China Lunar Exploration and Space Engineering Center said that later this year China plans to send the Chang’e-5 lunar probe to the moon to collect samples, marking the third step in its lunar program.

He said that China is looking to offer cooperation opportunities in investigating the lunar south pole region, setting up an international moon village and carrying out experiments including energy supply.

Liu added that in accordance with the principle of “openness and cooperation, sharing both risks and achievements,” China will create an open platform for cooperation enabling other countries to participate.

 

 

COOPERATION UNDERWAY

 

China has always advocated win-win cooperation between nations and it introduced the notion of building a community of shared destiny in late 2012.

To create peaceful cooperation in outer space, China has signed agreements with over 30 countries and organizations, including Russia, Kazakhstan, Germany, France, the ESA and UNOOSA.

China’s contribution to the international space industry has included helping over 20 countries and regions with 50 launches, and exporting satellites to nine countries.

Scientific innovation was a central topic at the recent Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation, with China proposing a Belt and Road Science, Technology and Innovation Cooperation Action Plan.

China also voiced its willingness to carry out more projects with Belt and Road countries in various fields, including satellite launches, maritime navigation and archaeological studies to enable more countries to benefit.

 

 

 

 

 

 

BEIJING  |    2017-06-07 13:55:16

 

China emphasizes

peaceful space exploration

 

By Liu Lu, Yu Fei, Quan Xiaoshu and Zuo Wei

 

China wants to improve space infrastructure and develop space sciences under the principle of creating peaceful cooperation in outer space, said an industry leader.

Wu Yansheng, president of China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC), made the remarks at the ongoing Global Space Exploration Conference (GLEX 2017) which began on Tuesday of June 6 in Beijing.

He said that China will continue to provide services for other countries, including international commercial launches and sending satellites into orbit.

According to Wu, China plans to set up a space station around 2022, and launch Chang’e-5 lunar probe in late 2017 to collect samples from the moon.

China plans to send a probe to Mars around 2020 and launch the Chang’e-4 lunar probe for a soft landing on the far side of the moon in 2018, he said.

China is also working on a concept for a manned lunar landing.

The mission will consist of a manned spaceship, a propulsion vehicle and a lunar lander. The manned spaceship and the lunar lander will be sent separately into lunar orbit, according to Wu.

The conference, which ends on Thursday of June 8, was jointly held by the International Astronautical Federation (IAF) and the Chinese Society of Astronautics and follows the GLEX 2012 conference held in Washington D.C.

International space engineers and delegates from leading aerospace companies including Boeing, Lockheed Martin and Airbus attended the conference.

 

 

 

 

 

 

BEIJING  |   2017-06-07 13:05:43

China discloses

Chang’e 5 lunar probe landing site

 

By Yu Fei, Quan Xiaoshu, Zuo Wei and Liu Lu

 

 

China’s Chang’e 5 lunar probe is expected to land in the Mons Rumker region, and to take moon samples back to earth at the end of the year, according to a Chinese space official.

Liu Jizhong, director of China Lunar Exploration and Space Engineering Center of China National Space Administration (CNSA), for the first time disclosed the probe landing site, an isolated volcanic formation located in the northwest part of the Moon’s near side.

Liu also mentioned China’s Chang’e 4 lunar probe. Delivering a report at the Global Space Exploration Conference, which opened in Beijing Tuesday, he said China’s Chang’e 4 lunar probe, which is expected to be the first human carrying probe landing on the far side of the moon, would be launched in 2018, carrying 11 scientific payloads, including four developed by other countries.

He said lunar exploration had many international cooperation opportunities and that constructing the international moon village or international research station, proposed by European Space Agency (ESA), was also a long-term goal for China.

“China is planning and designing its future lunar exploration program. We will focus on the south pole region of the moon. The research on water and the permanent shadow area of the lunar south pole region will bring greater scientific discoveries,” Liu said.

He said that China would push forward international cooperation in exploring the south pole of the moon, constructing lunar scientific research station and establishing long-term energy supply and autonomous infrastructures.

Liu proposed jointly exploring the lunar polar region and constructing the scientific research station as a guide for the international moon village or station, following international law.

He also proposed creating an open platform for cooperation in accordance with the principle of “sharing the risks and achievements,” and to set up the International Union of Planetary Scientists and the International Union of Planetary Science College Students.

He said scientists from different countries might jointly formulate scientific objectives, develop scientific payloads and carry out scientific data research.

“Partners may develop probes and facilities independently, which will complement each other. Enterprises are also encouraged to actively participate in lunar exploration,” Liu said. “Intergovernmental cooperation should be strengthened, and governments should co-ordinate existing deep space exploration infrastructures to share the resources and enhance investment efficiency.”

At the conference, Wu Yanhua, vice administrator of CNSA, honored the international partners of China’s Chang’e 4 mission, which will carry payloads from the Netherlands, Germany, Sweden and Saudi Arabia.

Since China proposed international cooperation on the Chang’e 4 mission last year, China has received more than 20 schemes from other countries.

“We support more international cooperation in China’s future lunar and Mars missions, as well as exploration to the Jupiter system and asteroids that are still under discussion,” Wu said.

“It is exactly what I was looking forward to,” said Jan Woerner, director general of the ESA. “It will fit perfectly to the moon village, ESA’s vision for international cooperation on the moon.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

BEIJING  |   2017-06-08 19:56:52

China achieves

key breakthrough

in multiple launch vehicles

 

By Liu Lu, Quan Xiaoshu, Yu Fei and Zuo Wei

 

 

China is working on reusable launch vehicles and has achieved progress in some key areas, a carrier rocket official said Thursday.

The processes under development include parachute-landing and propulsion-landing, said Lu Yu, director of Science and Technology Committee of the China Academy of Launch Vehicle Technology (CALT) at the Global Space Exploration Conference (GLEX 2017).

Reusable lift-body launchers will be developed in three stages — rocket-engine partial reusable vehicle, rocket-engine full reusable vehicle and combined cycle-engine reusable vehicle, said Lu.

The Long March carrier rockets still have room for improvement, Lu said, adding that the CALT is developing a heavy-lift launch vehicle with a payload of 140 tonnes to low Earth orbit and 50 tonnes to lunar transfer orbit.

The heavy-lift carrier rocket is currently called the Long March-9, and it should be sent into space by 2030, he said.

According to Lu, a low-cost commercial medium launch vehicle, the Long March-8. is under development, and based on the Long March-8, a new high-orbit medium launch vehicle should be designed to improve the Long March series and enhance competitiveness.

Since China’s space transportation system started in 1960s, a total of 17 types of launch vehicles have been developed. As of May 2017, Long March series carrier rockets have conducted 246 flights with a success rate of 96 percent, fulfilling missions including the launch of manned spacecraft, a moon rover and the BeiDou Navigation Satellite System.

Lu said that China has carried out international space transportation cooperation through piggyback- and commercial-satellite launches and in-orbit delivery.

As of present, the Long March series have finished 55 international launches, sending 64 payloads into orbit for more than 20 countries and regions.

China will also enhance cooperation by renting foreign launch sites to improve launch flexibility, building international launch sites at equatorial regions, and developing sea-based launch platforms with other countries, he said.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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