China in Space pp 223-265 | Cite as


  • Brian Harvey
Part of the Springer Praxis Books book series (PRAXIS)


Communications satellites have been an important line of development of the Chinese space program. In 1984, China launched its first communications satellite, the beginning of a long series that has brought television and modern communications to the whole Chinese landmass. This began the Dong Fang Hong series, now at Dong Fang Hong 5, with numerous derivatives and relays (e.g. Tianlian). China attempted to open its space program to launching western communications satellites (comsats), but this coincided with a prolonged, acrimonious and continuing standoff with the United States which still affects their relationship. Despite this, China has launched several comsats for foreign customers (e.g. Venezuela, Nigeria, Pakistan, Bolivia) and continues to develop its domestic series.


  1. 1.
    Smith, Marcia: China’s space program – an overview. CRS report for Congress, 21 October 2003; Chen, Lan: Hard road to commercial space – the past of Chinese commercial launches. Go Taikonauts!, #22, 2018.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Clark, Phillip S: China’s DFH-2 and DFH-2A communications satellites program. Journal of the British Interplanetary Society (JBIS), vol 54, 2001. Clark, Phillip S: The Chinese space program – an overview. Molniya Space Consultancy, 1996, 124–7.Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Chen Lan: Mist around the CZ-3B disaster. Go Taikonauts! #8, 2013.Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Lamb, Robert D: Satellites, security and scandal – understanding the politics of export control. Center for International and Security Studies, University of Maryland, 2005.Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    United States House of Representatives: US national security and military/commercial concerns with the People’s Republic of China, submitted by Mr. Cox of California, chairman. Report 105/851. Washington DC, US Government Printing Office, 1999.Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Smith, Marcia: China’s space program – an overview. CRS report for Congress, 21 October 2003.Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Kulacki, Gregory & Lewis, Jeffrey: A place for one’s mat – China’s space program, 1956–2003. Cambridge MA, American Academy of Arts & Sciences, 2009; Handberg, Roger & Li, Zhen: Chinese space policy – a study in domestic and international politics. Routledge, Abingdon, 2007.Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    The text is: None of the funds made available may be used for NASA or the Office of Science and Technology to develop, design, plan, promulgate, implement or execute a bilateral policy, program, order or contract of any kind to participate, collaborate or coordinate bilaterally in any way with China or any Chinese owned company unless such activities are specifically authorized by a law enacted after the date of enactment of this decision. The limitation shall also apply to funds used to effectuate the hosting of official Chinese visitors at facilities belonging to or utilized by NASA (minor editing for purposes of brevity).Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Kasplan, Jeremy & Berger, Judson: FBI probe of defense tech allegedly leaked from NASA stonewalled, sources say. Fox News, 22 February 2013.Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Myrrhe, Jacqueline: Hop on and hop off...but where do you go? Go Taikonauts! #11, 2014; Johnson, Andrew: An agreement to disagree. Go Taikonauts! #12, 2014.Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Oberhaus, Daniel: Will NASA ever work with China? Popular Mechanics, 18 October 2016; Normile, Dennis: Red Star rising. Science, 22 July 2016.Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    Lewis, Leo: Made in China? Definitely not this Moonshot. After decades of industrial theft, Beijing is desperate to be seen as a great innovator. The Times, 10 January 2014; Virgin Galactic bans Chinese nationals from space flights over espionage fears. The Independent, 29 January 2014.Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    Deng Hong; Wang Min & Pan Yi: Flight experience of DFH-4 commercial satellites. Paper presented to International Astronautical Congress, Naples, 2012.Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    Zhou, Zhicheng: Chinese DFH-4 platform product line improvement and enhancement. Paper presented to International Astronautical Congress, Naples, 2012.Google Scholar
  15. 15.
    Zhang, Tianping: Electric propulsion development for DFH-4SP satellite platform. Paper presented to International Astronautic Congress, Toronto, 2014.Google Scholar
  16. 16.
    Pirard, Theo: Global V in 2018 – Sino Belgian satellite to monitor the global biosphere every two days. Go Taikonauts! #18, 2016.Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    With MP approval, Egypt’s space and satellite plans move ahead. Africa Times, 26 December 2017.Google Scholar
  18. 18.
    Leithen, Francis: How China is using soft power in space business. Aviation Week & Space Technology, 7 July 2017.Google Scholar
  19. 19.
    Liang, Ma; Ping, Xie, Dapeng, Liu & Yang, Wu: Research on the influence of China’s commercial space flight on the economic and social development of the regions along the Belt and Road. Presentation to International Astronautical Congress, Bremen, October 2018.Google Scholar
  20. 20.
    Clark, Phillip S: China’s Shiyan Weixing satellite program. Space Chronicle, vol 71, #1, January 2018.Google Scholar
  21. 21.
    Pollpeter, Kevin; Anderson, Eric; Wilson, Jordan & Yang, Fan: China dream, space dream. China’s progress in space technologies and implications for the United States. US-China Economic and Security Review Commission, undated.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Brian Harvey
    • 1
  1. 1.TempleogueIreland

Personalised recommendations