Advertisement

China’s space programme and Asia

  • Srikanth Kondapalli
Part of the Yearbook on Space Policy book series (YEARSPACE)

Abstract

China’s space programme in 2008/2009 exhibited several new features, while continuing to follow the guidelines enunciated at the turn of the century. While the recent emphasis on satellite, manned spacecraft and lunar mission launches continued to be reflected in the Chinese space programme, further modernisation of space technologies, research on new launchers, and “batch” production of these space systems was also pushed forward, testifying maturity in the domestic space industrial potential and capabilities. Among the significant achievements of China in this field in this year are stepped up satellite launches, the extravehicular activity of Shenzhou 7 manned spacecraft in September 2008, the March 2009 realisation of the lunar mission launched in October 2007 and bidding for the international commercial launches. 753 Nevertheless, despite these successes, the failure to put into specified orbit a French-built Indonesian satellite on 31 August 2009 dents into these images of robust space programme of China.

Keywords

Synthetic Aperture Radar Outer Space Space Technology Hybrid Rocket Lunar Mission 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Notes

  1. 753.
    For recent studies on the subject see: Yuan, Jing-dong. “China’s Ascendancy to a Space Power.” China Brief 8.8 (2008); “The nature and extent of China’s Space and Cyber Activities and their implications for U.S. Security.” November 2008. U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission 2008 Report to Congress. Section 3. 15 Dec. 2009. http://www.uscc.gov: 156–181; Pollpeter, Kevin. Building for the Future: China’s Progress in Space Technology during the Tenth 5-year Plan and the U.S. Response. Carlisle Barracks, PA: Strategic Studies Institute, 2008.
  2. 754.
    Moss, Trefor. “The Asian Space Race.” Jane’s Defence Weekly 23 Oct. 2008.Google Scholar
  3. 755.
    Interestingly, according to a North Korean study, 0.1 gram of helium-3 can contain the same amount of energy obtained from 4.3 tons of coal. This report suggested that Indian Chandrayaan 1 project is aimed at ultimately developing “Moon mine”. See “For the Peaceful Use of Space.” 9 Feb. 2009. Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) accessed from U.S. Foreign Broadcast Information Services available at: http://wnc.fedworld.gov; at NewsEdge Document Number: 200902091477.1_fbb906f03a190f4b File Number 985 Accession Number 275900500 [Hereafter FBIS].
  4. 756.
    According to Han Liyan of School of Economics and Management of Beihang University, 80% of the 1000 types of new materials China developed came from space technology. Again, nearly 2000 space technology items were transferred to the civilian economy. See “Space Mission a Boost for Civil Industries.” 26 Sept. 2008. Xinhua. Another report suggested making available space food, chocolates, ear plugs etc for the civilian market. See “China Turns Space Technology Into Civilian Products.” 26 Sept. 2008. Xinhua. See also “Successful Manned Space Mission Triggers Booming Aerospace Economy.” 21 Oct. 2005. Xinhua. FBIS.Google Scholar
  5. 757.
    It is interesting to note the financial allocations to civilian space activities globally. In 2007, the U.S. spent 18.82 billion U.S. dollars, the European Union 3.57 billion U.S. dollars, China 2.5 billion U.S. dollars, Japan 1.9 billion U.S. dollars, France 1.8 billion U. S. dollars, Russia 1.34 billion U. S. dollars and India 0.84 billion U.S. dollars. See “Russia Sixth in Terms of Financing Civilian Space Programs.” Agentstvo Voyennykh Novostey. 7 June 2008. FBIS.Google Scholar
  6. 758.
    See Hiramatsu, Shigeo. “North Korea’s Nuclear Missiles Are a ‘Political Weapon’.” Sankei Shimbun. 20 Apr. 2009. FBIS.Google Scholar
  7. 759.
    Zhang identified output value generated specifically in the broadcast and communication satellites production, a newproduction chain of “Big Dipper” command system, etc. See Xuanliang, Li. “China’s Space Program Said Unaffected by Financial Crisis.” 5 Apr. 2009. Xinhua Domestic Service. FBIS.Google Scholar
  8. 760.
    See Westlake, Michael. “China on Course in Space.” Aerospace America (April2009): 8–9 and 17.Google Scholar
  9. 761.
    “China Expected to Launch 15 to 16 Satellites This Year.” People’s Daily 10 Mar. 2009. FBIS.Google Scholar
  10. 762.
    While Thales Alenia Space is expected to garner 9.2% of the global share, European Satellite Nav about 4.1%, Loral Space Systems 5.3% and EADS Astrium 7.2% in the same period. See Edwards, John S. “Finding a Niche: Satellite Manufacturers See New Opportunities in Evolving Market.” Aviation Week & Space Technology 26 Jan. 2009: 141–43.Google Scholar
  11. 763.
    “China’s Space Industry Takes Off.” 5 Nov. 2008 Xinhua. FBIS.Google Scholar
  12. 764.
    “FengYun-2E (FY-2E) Delivered in Orbit.” 25 May 2009. China National Space Administration. IS Dec. 2009. http://www.cnsa.gov.cn/n615709/n620682/n639462/168784.html.
  13. 765.
    This was the 112th launch of the LM series. See “China Puts Two Satellites Into Orbit.” 6 Nov. 2008. China National Space Administration. 15 Dec. 2009. http://www.cnsa.gov.cn/n615709/n620682/n639462/167771.html.
  14. 766.
    “China Launches Yaogan V remote-sensing Satellite.” 15 Dec. 2008. China National Space Administration. 15 Dec. 2009. http://www.cnsa.gov.cn/n615709/n620682/n639462/167774.html.
  15. 767.
    Grevatt, Jon. “CASC Acquires China Satcom as Telecommunications Reform Gathers Momentum.” Jane’s Defence Industry 14 Apr. 2009.Google Scholar
  16. 768.
    See Keymer, Eleanor. “Space-saving Devices: Militaries Look to Make the Most of Commercial Satellites.” International Defence Review 7 Oct. 2008.Google Scholar
  17. 769.
    See Caceres, Marco. “Navigation Satellites Fuel Payload Growth.” Aerospace America (June 2009): 14–16.Google Scholar
  18. 770.
    Butterworth-Hayes, Philip. “Satellite Navigation Newcomers: Cooperation or Competition?” Aerospace America (March 2009): 32–37.Google Scholar
  19. 771.
    Indonesia spent nearly 500 million U.S. dollars on this satellite. See Clark, Stephen. “Chinese Rocket Launches Satellite to Wrong Orbit.” 31 Aug. 2009. Spaceflightnow.com. 15 Dec. 2009.
  20. 772.
    See Caceres, Marco. “GEO Comsats Up, Launch Programs Down.” Aerospace America (April 2009): 20–22.Google Scholar
  21. 773.
    For instance, it was reported that in December 2008, China conducted a hybrid rocket test to test an engine from Jiuquan range. It was reported that the rocket measured 3.417 m long and 0.22 m in diameter. See “China Conducts First Successful Test of Hybrid Rocket.” 6 Dec. 2008. China National Space Administration. 15 Dec. 2009. http://www.cnsa.gov.cn/n615709/n620682/n639462/167773.html.
  22. 774.
    One of the reasons for delay in this launch was the preparation for an appropriate space suit. See for the interview, Chunguang, Yu and Zhao Bo. “What Will the Flight of’shen VII Bring Us? — Chief Designer of China’s Manned Space Flight Project Zhou Jianping explains’ shen VII.” Liberation Army Daily 8 Oct. 2008. On the issues related to the space suit see Gang, Liu and Zhao Bo. “Make Life Armor for Space Walk—Interview With Chen Shanguang, Commander-in-Chief and Chief Designer of Astronaut System.” Liberation Army Daily 6 Oct. 2008. FBIS.Google Scholar
  23. 775.
    “A Stirring Song of Victory in Space Flight — Warm Congratulations on the Complete Success of the Shenzhou 7 Manned Space Flight of Our Country.” People’s Daily Editorial 29 Sept. 2009. FBIS.Google Scholar
  24. 776.
    Saichun, Zoo and Zhao Bo. “Shen Seven [Shenzhou Seven] Will Achieve Technological Breakthroughs in Four Respects.” Liberation Army Daily 5 Nov. 2008; Jie, Tan and Chai Yongzhong. “Integrated Observation and Control Takes First Step Forward-An Interview with Observation and Control System Chief Designer Qian Weiping.” Liberation Army Daily 5 Nov. 2008. FBIS.Google Scholar
  25. 777.
    Chunguang, Yu and Zhao Bo. “Zhou Jianping Talks About Shenzhou VII. ” Liberation Army Daily 29 Sept. 2008. FBIS.Google Scholar
  26. 778.
    See for the interview, Chunguang, Yu and Zhao Bo. “What Will the Flight of’Shen VII Bring Us?-Chief Designer of China’sManned Space Flight Project Zhou Jianping explains’ shen VII.” Liberation Army Daily 8 Oct. 2008. FBIS.Google Scholar
  27. 779.
    The average age of the members of the team which developed this engine is said to be in their thirties. See Fangjia, Hao, Ming, Ji and Gao Lu. “Speaking From the Heart: Chang’e-1 Satellite Engine Production Team — Every Success Signals an Even Bigger Challenge.” 8 Nov. 2008. Xinhua Domestic Service. FBIS.Google Scholar
  28. 780.
    “China’s Lunar Probe Chang’e-1 Impacts Moon.” 1 Mar. 2009. Xinhua. FBIS.Google Scholar
  29. 781.
    “China To Land Probe on Moon at Latest in 2013, Chief Designer Says.” 2 Mar. 2009. Xinhua. FBIS.Google Scholar
  30. 782.
    “Unmanned Space Module To Be Launched in 2010, Await Space Docking.” 28 Feb. 2009. Xinhua. FBIS; “China Strives for Completion of Manned Space Station by 2020.” People’s Daily 8 Dec. 2008. FBIS.Google Scholar
  31. 783.
    See “Japan Urged To Stop Its Moves To Turn Itself Into Military Power.” KCNA 8 Dec 2008. FBIS.Google Scholar
  32. 784.
    Moss, Trefor. “The Asian Space Race.” Jane’s Defence Weekly 23 Oct. 2008.Google Scholar
  33. 785.
    See Caceres, Marco. “GEO Comsats Up, Launch Programs Down.” Aerospace America (April 2009): 20–22. H-2 is operated by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries.Google Scholar
  34. 786.
    “Aerospace Industry.” The Korea Herald Editorial 13 June 2009. FBIS.Google Scholar
  35. 787.
    “Space Dream — Korea Takes First Step Toward Exploring Outer World.” The Korea Times 12 June 2009. FBIS.Google Scholar
  36. 788.
    Westlake, Michael. “Joining the Space Race, Carefully.” Aerospace America (July-August 2009): 8–10.Google Scholar
  37. 789.
    “Software Caused S. Korean Rocket Launch Problems.” 20 Aug. 2009. AFP. 15 Dec. 2009. http://news.id.msn.com/regional/article.aspx?cp-documentid=3539634.
  38. 790.
    “S. Korea Pushing For Joint Space Experiment With Japan.” Yonhap 18 Jan. 2009. FBIS.Google Scholar
  39. 791.
    The first Kwangmyongsong 1 was launched in August 1998. However, the U.S. suggested that this was a Taepodong 1 launch. See “DPRK Launches Rocket.” 5 Apr. 2009. Xinhua. FBIS.Google Scholar
  40. 792.
    “UNSC Presidential Statement Condemns DPRK’s Rocket Launch.” Yonhap 14 Apr. 2009. FBIS; Sue-young, Kim “China, Russia Lukewarm Over Sanctioning N. Korea”. The Korea Times 29 Mar. 2009. FBIS.Google Scholar
  41. 793.
    “Enhance Space Vision: Manmohan.” The Hindu 26 Aug. 2009.Google Scholar
  42. 794.
    A few writings which contend for an emerging arms race between the two are Day, Dwayne A. “The New Path to Space: India and China Enter the Game.” 13 Oct. 2008. The Space Review. 15 Dec. 2009. http://www.thespacereview.com/article/1231/1; Singh, Madhur. “India Gains on China in Asia’s Space Race.” 21 Oct. 2008. Time. 15 Dec. 2009. http://www.time.com/time/world/article/ 0.8599,1852608.00.html.
  43. 795.
    “India Confident of Manned Space Programme: ISRO.” The Hindu 13 June 2009.Google Scholar
  44. 796.
    See Subramanian, T. S. “ISRO Loses Radio Contact With Chandrayaan-1.” The Hindu 30 Aug. 2009.Google Scholar
  45. 797.
    See Caceres, Marco. “Navigation Satellites Fuel Payload Growth.” Aerospace America (June 2009): 14–16.Google Scholar
  46. 798.
    Reportedly no country possesses such a satellite. See Ben-David, Alon. “Israel Boosts Imagery Capability with SAR Satellite Launch.” Jane’s Defence Weekly 30 Jan. 2008.Google Scholar
  47. 799.
    See Bedi, Rahul. “India Launches Israeli-built Spy Satellite.” Jane’s Defence Weekly 23 Apr. 2009.Google Scholar
  48. 800.
    “Senior Space Science Expert Interview by Iran: ‘Omid Satellite Was Designed, Put Into Operation in Two, Half Years.” Iran Online 16 Apr. 2009. FBIS.Google Scholar
  49. 801.
    Some suggest to the Chinese help in the Iranian rocket technology. See Westlake, Michael. “China on Course in Space.” Aerospace America (April 2009): 8–9 and 17.Google Scholar
  50. 802.
    Richardson, Doug. “Iran Satellite Launch Suggests Advances in Indigenous Missile Technology.” Jane’s Missiles & Rockets 5 Mar. 2009.Google Scholar
  51. 803.
    “Iran Kicks off 12-Year Project To Send Astronaut Into Space.” 12 Feb. 2009. Xinhua. FBIS. See also for a North Korean perspective critiquing U.S. position on Iran’s launch, Hak-nam, Ri. “Progressive Mankind’s Struggles To Build an Independent New World Cannot be Stopped.” Rodong Sinmun 2 Mar. 2009. FBIS.Google Scholar
  52. 804.
    See the interview with Chairman and CEO of Arianespace, Jean Yves Le Gall at Aerospace America (March 2009) pp. 12-15 on the difficulties in revising ITAR [U.S. law on International Traffic in Arms Regulations].Google Scholar
  53. 805.
    Jones, Morris. “My Decade With Shenzhou.” 3 Aug. 2009. Spacedaily.com. 15 Dec. 2009. http://www.spacedaily.com/reports/My_Decade_with_Shenzhou_999.html.
  54. 806.
    Pengfei, Liang, Huaze, Li and Li Xiaomei. “Building ‘National Team’ in Space Field — Stories About Research Institute Under General Armament Department Using Scientific Development Concept to Guide Innovations in Its Scientific Research Work.” Liberation Army Daily 2 Mar. 2009. FBIS.Google Scholar
  55. 807.
    Bedi, Rahul. “Indian DRDO Strives to Stem Loss of Military Scientists.” Jane’s Defence Weekly 5 Sept. 2008.Google Scholar
  56. 808.
    See the arguments of Cui Jijun director of the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center: “Experts Dismiss Concerns Over China’s Manned Space Program.” 22 Sept. 2008. Xinhua. FBIS.Google Scholar
  57. 809.
    See “China’s Space Army Program vs. Taiwanese Satellite Targets.” Kanwa News 20 Dec. 2008.Google Scholar
  58. 810.
    See Westlake, Michael. “China on Course in Space.” Aerospace America (April 2009): 8–9 and 17.Google Scholar
  59. 811.
    Petrov, Vladimir. “China and Russia Outline Opposition to Space Weaponry.” Jane’s Defence Weekly 27 Feb. 2008.Google Scholar
  60. 812.
    Yang cited in “China Warns of ‘Arms Race in Outer Space’.” 12 Aug. 2009. AP. 15 Dec. 2009. http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5gqYd7ilaVIa0UGe7wE5BsHn5CzrwD9A1A1N01.

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag/Wien 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Srikanth Kondapalli

There are no affiliations available

Personalised recommendations