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Full text: China's Space Program: A 2021 Perspective

White Paper
The State Council Information Office of the People's Republic of China published a white paper titled "China's Space Program: A 2021 Perspective" on Friday.

XinhuaUpdated:  January 28, 2022

IV. Research on Space Science

China's research on space science focuses on scientific questions such as the origin and evolution of the universe, and the relationship between the solar system and humanity. It has launched programs to explore space and conduct experiments, advanced research on basic theories, and incubated major research findings.

1. Research on Space Science

(1) Space astronomy

The Dark Matter Particle Explorer (DAMPE) Satellite obtained the precise measurements of the energy spectrums of cosmic ray electrons, protons and the GCR helium. The Huiyan (Insight) Hard X-ray Modulation Telescope was successfully launched; it has since discovered the strongest magnetic field in the universe and obtained a panoramic view of the black hole binary explosion process. The Xihe observation satellite was successfully launched, which obtained multiple solar spectroscopic images at different wavelengths in the Hα waveband.

(2) Lunar and planetary science

Led by its lunar exploration program, China has achieved significant advances in the comprehensive surveying of the moon's geology and subsurface structure, in dating the lunar magmatic activity, and in analyzing its mineralogical features and chemical elements. In planetary exploration, China has built a deeper understanding of the geological evolution of Mars by conducting analysis of its surface structure and soil and the composition of its rocks.

(3) Space earth sciences

Zhangheng-1, also known as the China Seismo-Electromagnetic Satellite, helped to obtain data on and build models of the global geomagnetic field and the in situ data of ionosphere parameters. A high-precision global carbon flux map, developed by using the data from the Chinese Global Carbon Dioxide Monitoring Scientific Experimental Satellite, is shared globally free of any charge.

(4) Space physics

With the help of Mozi, the world's first quantum communication satellite, China has carried out experiments on satellite-based quantum teleportation and entanglement distribution over thousand kilometers, on gravitational induced decoherence of quantum entanglement, and on entanglement-based secure quantum cryptography over thousand kilometers with no trusted relay. It has also launched the Taiji-1 and Tianqin-1 satellites to support the space gravitational wave detection program.

In the next five years, China will continue with the research and development of programs such as the satellite for space gravitational wave detection, the Einstein Probe, the advanced space-based solar observatory, the panoramic imaging satellite for solar wind and magnetosphere interaction, and the high precision magnetic field measurement satellite, focusing on the subjects of the extreme universe, ripples in time and space, the panoramic view of the sun and the earth, and the search for habitable planets. China will continue to explore frontier areas and research into space astronomy, heliospheric physics, lunar and planetary science, space earth sciences, and space physics, to generate more original scientific findings.

2. Science Experiments in Space

With the help of the Shenzhou spacecraft series, the Tiangong-2 space laboratory, and the Shijian-10 satellite, China has achieved mammalian embryonic development in space and in-orbit verification of the world's first space cold atom clock, expanded the understanding of the mechanisms behind particle segregation in microgravity, pulverized coal combustion, and material preparation, and achieved research findings in space science of international standing.

In the coming five years, China will make use of space experiment platforms such as the Tiangong space station, the Chang'e lunar probe series, and the Tianwen-1 Mars probe to conduct experiments and research on biology, life, medicine, and materials, to expand humanity's understanding of basic science.

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