China has become a full-fledged cosmic power, and this is just the beginning of their expansion

In the field of space exploration and exploration, almost everyone focuses on the achievements of the Western world, forgetting about China. This is a mistake, especially that soon the Middle Kingdom will come dangerously close to the position of the current leader - the United States.

I do not think I am exaggerating. Take, for example, such an International Space Station. The structure built by joint forces across the United States, Russia, Canada, Japan and European countries is currently our only space research center. Nothing lasts forever. The last mission on the ISS is scheduled to end in 2024. The International Space Station has been circling our orbit since 1998 and is just becoming a bit worn construction.

Guess what the name of the ISS will be called? Tiangong or, if you prefer, the "Heavenly Palace". The Chinese are responsible for the entire project, developed as part of the state program of the same name. The Chinese space station is by no means the only achievement of the Middle Kingdom when it comes to the conquest of the cosmos.

Chinese space conquest

It is true that China was late with sending its first astronaut into orbit. This happened only in 2003, 40 years after the United States and Russia began their cosmic race. This is, however, the past. Currently, China is one of the countries with the most active space program. This is evidenced by the recent landing of the lander on the dark side of the Moon - an art that has never succeeded so far because of the big challenges in terms of communication with the lander.

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It can be said that this is just the beginning of Chinese space exploration and research . Although, in fact, the previous Chinese probe - Chang'e 3 landed on the Moon (only on its hemispheroid visible from Earth) 5 years ago. Chang'e number 4 is just another step in the implementation of a much more extensive plan.

China currently has as many as four of its own spaceports, from which will launch next cosmic missions. Including those related to the construction of the Chinese space station discussed above, on which - according to the declaration of the Chinese authorities - already in 2022, the first human crew will appear.

The current pace of the implementation of the next space missions is of course related to the local politics. In 2021, the 100th anniversary of the formation of the Chinese Communist Party falls, and in 2049 the country will celebrate the 100th anniversary of the party's rule. Older readers who remember the times of the PRL probably surely understand that such anniversaries must be celebrated with the right pump.

Returning to a more serious tone, the chairman of the party Xi Jinping announced that China will soon become the largest power on Earth, including thanks to the development of Chinese science and technology. Conquest of space perfectly fits into this picture. Well, from what China has presented so far, their next space mission seems to be the most real.

Let us not forget that the Chinese authorities want to use their space program also for purposes related to national security. It's such a nice term, for example, China wants to have a weapon in orbit. The American Pentagon also claims that the Middle Kingdom already has a weapon capable of destroying satellites. Well, let's leave these spy battles to spies.

China versus the United States: rivalry on the moon

The pace of work connected with the Heavenly Palace is impressive, and this is not the end. By 2030, the Middle Kingdom wants to send a manned mission to the moon. However, it will not be a journey calculated to punch another flag into the surface of our natural satellite. China is seriously planning to establish its own lunar colony.

From the statements of Zhang Kejian, the head of the Chinese Space Agency, we know that the Chinese station will be built at the south pole of the Moon. The first elements of the station will be sent into space in the first half of 2020 on board a new Chinese rocket called Long March-5B.

Interestingly, the Chinese plans to set up a bridgehead on the moon do not take into account the actions of the Americans at all. Someone could ask: what's the matter, it's two different countries, so it's probably normal, right? Yes and no. Our previous space expansion has (mostly) been based on the idea of ​​international cooperation, the best example being the construction of the International Space Station.

Chinese strategy breaks a bit with this tradition. Although international missions will continue to be invited on board the Heavenly Palace, everything will be under the strict control of the Chinese Space Agency. This philosophy is even better when it comes to the construction of the Chinese space base on the Moon.

Considering that the Americans want to do the same, every other country would probably try to establish cooperation with them, share the costs and put together a single structure together. But not China, which currently has both the right budget and technology to become a full-fledged and independent space power.

From the European perspective, it still sounds a bit preposterous. For years, we have been accustomed to the stereotype of China being the cheapest factory in the world. However, this world has changed and in its latest iteration the Middle Kingdom has its own and increasingly advanced technologies that allow for bolder expansion. Not only in space.



China has become a full-fledged cosmic power, and this is just the beginning of their expansion

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