China: September 2016 Archives

Updated: Congress Hearing: Are We Losing the Space Race to China [Hearing video]

Subcommittee Examines China's Space Exploration Capabilities and Achievements, House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology Democrats

"Now, almost 50 years since that historic event, some are asking if we are again in a space race, but this time with China. Two weeks ago, China successfully placed in orbit its Tiangong-2 experimental orbiting space lab. And that accomplishment comes on the heels of China's landing a robotic rover on the Moon, with plans announced to do the same on Mars. So, should we be concerned that China is may be closing the gap in spaceflight capabilities?"

Chairman Smith Opening Statement: Are We Losing the Space Race to China?

"China continues to make progress. We cannot resign ourselves to the remembrance of past achievements. It is time for the United States to reassert its leadership. For over fifty years, the United States has been committed to the peaceful use and exploration of outer space. Our philosophical principles of freedom, the rule of law, and transparency are evident in the actions we take. The United States shares scientific data and findings, promotes international cooperation, and maintains international peace and security in outer space. The world has benefited from U.S. space leadership."

Witness Statements: Dennis Shea, Mark Stokes, Dean Cheng, James Lewis

Earlier China postings

U.S., China will meet this year to talk space debris, SpaceNews

"In a keynote speech here Sept. 22 at the AMOS conference, Frank Rose, the assistant secretary of State for arms control, verification and compliance, said that the upcoming discussion would likely include talk of space debris.

While representatives from the U.S. and China have met previously to talk about civil uses of space, the two sides met for a separate discussion of military space topics for the first time in May. Space debris has been a divisive issue between the countries for nearly a decade."

Related: More satellite collision warnings to come with Space Fence data, SpaceNews

"A senior Pentagon official said the U.S. Air Force will need to rethink how it issues satellite collision warnings when a new space object tracking system goes online or risk overwhelming satellite operators and hardware systems with overly cautious alerts."

Marc's note: This isn't an issue that's going to go away. All nations must eventually sit down and deal with space debris. And its going to come at a cost. A safe, secure space environment is in everyone's best interest.

Next Thursday, September 29th at 2:30 pm ET, SpaceRef will broadcast live the International Astronautical Congress plenary session "Projection and Stability of the Orbital Debris Environment in the Light of Planned Mega-Constellation Deployments" which deals with space debris.

China's Tiangong-1 space station 'out of control' and will crash to Earth, The Guardian

"China's first space station is expected to come crashing down to Earth next year, fuelling concerns that Chinese space authorities have lost control of the 8.5-tonne module."

"Based on our calculation and analysis, most parts of the space lab will burn up during falling," the deputy director of China's manned space engineering office, Wu Ping, was quoted as saying by official news agency Xinhua."

"Jonathan McDowell, renowned Harvard astrophysicist and space industry enthusiast, said the announcement suggested China had lost control of the station and that it would re-enter the Earth's atmosphere "naturally."

US expert: Launch of Tiangong-2 a 'great leap', CCTV (with video)

"Tiangong-2 is very important because it's the 2nd space station that China has launched. It's improved on the earlier version. This will be used for several years, and then it will be followed by a larger and more complex space station. This is how you learn to do things in space. This is the way the US did it, Russia did it. This is a very significant space station because it can also be refueled, which the earlier one could not. The Tiangong 2 also will last a lot longer. It has a matter of fact, the first mission, Shenzhou 11 is going up in October, and they will be up there for over a month. So, that now is twice the length of the previous mission. Every mission gets longer and more complex, that's what China is doing. China, within 2 or 3 years, could be seen as an equal competitor to the Russian goverment's space manned program, and the US's, the European's, and the Japanese space program," said Keith Cowing, former NASA employee."

China Launches Tiangong-2 Space Laboratory Module (With video)

"China launched the Tiangong-2 space laboratory module on a Long March 2F rocket today. The two year year mission of Tiangong-2 will see two Chinese astronauts occupy the space lab for up to a month at a time to perform a variety of scientific experiments. In October, Shenzhou 11, will launch with two astronauts on the first mission to the newly commissioned space lab."

Keith's note: As I said on CCTV in an earlier interview today I think that it is time that the U.S. and China started to expand their cooperation in space including human space flight. This will need to be done by Congress by ending the politically-oinspired ban that is currently in place.

Marc's note: As China moves forward with its human spaceflight program should the International community and the U.S. forge closer ties with them? My position is that international cooperation in space is critical for the continual peaceful use of space, and for the commercial use of LEO, GEO, the moon and future scientific exploration beyond the moon. This then would include cooperation with China.



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This page is an archive of entries in the China category from September 2016.

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