Last updated at: (Beijing Time) Monday, May 20, 2002
China Sets to Land on Moon by 2010
"China is expected to complete its first exploration of the moon in 2010 and will establish a base on the moon as we did in the South Pole and the North Pole," Ouyang Ziyuan, chief scientist of China's moon exploration programme, said at an exhibition on space technology, part of the ongoing second national science week.
From where is to begin China's moon exploration program? How the "Shenzhou" aircraft to take man to space? And what the future Mars probe would like?...
May 18 saw the opening ceremony of 2002 China Science-Technology Week, in which an exhibition under the theme "Future on Science" was staged at the China Centenary Altar. Space exploration formed the central part of the exhibition.
"By now China's lunar program has gone through detailed feasibility studies and China is totally capable of moon exploration in theory".
"China's long-term aim and task is to set up a base on the moon to tap and make use of its rich resources. While China's first time moon exploration is to begin with launching an exploration satellite".
"Shenzhou III" Launched
China launched another unmanned spacecraft, "Shenzhou III", 10:15PM March, 25, (Beijing Time) from Jiuquan Satellite Launching Center of Gansu Province, and ten minutes after blast-off, the spaceship entered its preset orbit. In Detail>>>
Ouyang Ziyuan, an academician of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, who is in charge of China's lunar program, made public the plan on Saturday in a lecture entitled "Shenzhou III and China's Moon Exploration Program".
The satellite is to be launched into lunar orbit for comprehensively probing into rich resources on the moon such as He3, Fe, Ti and water-ice, as well as its surface condition, landforms, geologic structure and physical fields through remote sensing.
"China is expected to complete its first exploration of the moon in 2010 and will establish a base on the moon as we did in the South Pole and the North Pole,'' said Ouyang.
Another two deputy chief designers of Shenzhou III spacecraft revealed a three-step plan of China's first manned spaceflight: Take Chinese astronauts into space; create a space laboratory; and establish China's space station and establish a connection with international space stations.
They said that 12 astronauts, who passed a rigid selection process to become the country's first generation of astronauts, are currently receiving intensive training.
China is to carry out a manned spaceflight around 2005 if Shenzhou IV unmanned spacecraft makes a successful test flight.
The exhibition also includes some experimental samples taken by the spacecraft from outer space, which visitors can touch.
In addition, a future expedition to Mars is on display.
Visitors to the exhibition are said to have fun while increasing their scientific knowledge.
The government named the third week of May as the annual national science week last year, aiming to develop nationwide activities to publicize science and technology among the masses.
Government officials said more than 400 large activities will be held throughout the country this year to help publicize national policies in science and technology and to display new scientific and technological achievements of various departments at all levels in different regions.