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Long March-2F rocket to serve more manned missions to space station

Chief designer of Chinas only rocket type for manned missions unveiled why the Long March-2F carrier rocket is the most advanced, safest way to send Chinese astronauts to space."The Long March-2F rocket kept evolving as its development started at the same time as Chinas manned space program. The carrier rocket development is the capability and the foundation for us exploring the space," said Rong Yi, chief designer of the Long March-2F rocket at China Academy of Launch Vehicle Technology in an interview with China Media Group (CMG).As Chinas first and only rocket type for manned missions, the Long March-2F carrier rockets have conducted 19 successful launches since they started service in 1999. They have sent out 15 Shenzhou spaceships, a target spacecraft Tiangong-1, a space lab Tiangong-2 and two reusable experimental spacecraft. Ten out of 15 Shenzhou spaceships have been manned missions.China started its manned space program back in 1992. The Long March-2F rocket made its debut on November 20, 1999, with the Shenzhou-1 spacecraft. In 2003, China sent astronaut Yang Liwei into space and he returned safely with the Shenzhou-5 spaceship, Chinas first ever manned space mission.Rong revealed that the low temperature challenged the latest launch of Shenzhou-15 manned mission in November as a sudden cold snap arrived."We had to add insulating layers to the rocket and the team at the launching pad also put up some fence at the site to keep the rocket in a suitable environment with a right temperature of minus 20 degrees Celsius," said Rong.The launch has verified the capability of the Chinas carrier rocket to be able to adjust in different environment.The research team designed two extra separate systems for the Long March-2F rocket which are the failure detection system and the escape tower.Once the failure detection system has identified any major malfunction of the rocket, which is traveling at a height of less than 39 to ...

China's lunar probe Chang'e-4 celebrates 4th anniversary of landing

Worlds first lunar probe that landed the far side of the moon, Chinas Change-4, celebrates its fourth anniversary since its landing on the Von Karman crater on January 3, 2019. The dark side is never visible from the earth due to a phenomenon called tidal locking. But the probe sent back the worlds first close picture of the moons far side via the relay satellite Queqiao (Magpie Bridge) which is operating in the halo orbit around the second Lagrangian (L2) point of the Earth-Moon system.Change-4 captures worlds first close picture of the moons far side, January 3, 2019. (Photos: CNSA)The rover that took the ride along with the Change probe, Yutu-2, has traveled 1445 meters on the far side of the moon.Designed with only three months of service life, the rover has demonstrated beyond normal performance and has depicted the unique and untrodden landscape on the moons far side.The rover is also equipped with many detection payloads, including a panoramic camera, lunar penetrating radar, an infrared imaging spectrometer and a neutral atom detector co-developed with Sweden to study the topography, mineral composition and shallow surface structure of the moon.The Change-4 lunar lander (L) captured by Yutu-2s panoramic camera and the Yutu-2 lunar rover (R) captured by a landscape camera installed on Change-4, January 11, 2019. What to expect from Chinas future lunar missionsChina is already on course for the engineering of the fourth phase of its lunar exploration program. Launched in 2022, the phase-4 lunar program will conduct scientific exploration at the lunar south pole in order to facilitate the construction of a basic structure for the International Lunar Research Station in the area by 2035.The agency revealed the major goals of the three upcoming lunar missions that will be carried out before 2030:· Change- 6 will explore and retrieve samples from the high-value region of the moon.· Chang&#3...

China's landing site: always ready to facilitate space missions

Personnel at work after the landing of the Shenzhou-13 manned spacecraft at Dongfeng Landing Site, Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region, North China, April 16, 2022. /CFPThanks to years of training and painstaking efforts, north Chinas Dongfeng Landing Site has developed strong search and rescue capabilities to ensure the smooth running of an important link of the countrys manned space program, said a senior official of the site during an interview with China Media Group (CMG).Located in the Gobi Desert in north Chinas Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region near Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center, Dongfeng Landing Site was put into practical use in September 2021, when it welcomed home the three astronauts of the Shenzhou-12 manned space mission."We have a mature search and rescue scheme. The Beijing Center and Dongfeng Center predict the landing point of the re-entry capsule in real time, and the air and ground detachments start off in advance to the predicted landing point," said Hu Xiaochun, deputy director of Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center and deputy commander of the landing site headquarters of Chinas manned space program.Hu said that the night search for the Shenzhou-14 manned spacecraft in December 2022 was conducted smoothly."We ensured the arrival of helicopters and personnel as soon as the spacecraft landed. Each task, including landing, opening the latch and taking the astronauts out of the cabin, was carried out in an interconnected and orderly manner," he said.Previously, Chinas returning spacecrafts used to land at a site in Siziwang Banner in Inner Mongolia, while Dongfeng served as a backup site to ensure the meteorological conditions at the landing site met the requirements for safe landing.In December 2022, the Shenzhou-15 mission wrapped up the construction of Chinas space station and started the first stage of its application and development. Now, spacecraft can remain docked at the space station until the me...

Digitalization gaining ground in China on wider application

Chinese enterprises expenditures on digital businesses will witness speedy growth in 2023, as cutting-edge digital technologies, such as 5G, artificial intelligence and cloud computing, have been increasingly applied into a wide range of fields and integrated with the real economy, according to market research company International Data Corp.The digital transformation of enterprises will stand at an inflection point this year and the next five years will still be a golden period for pushing forward digitalization, IDC said, expecting more than 50 percent of the global GDP will be driven by digitally transformed enterprises in the next five years."Chinese companies investment in digital transformation is expected to quadruple its economic growth in 2023, with the compound annual growth rate of digital business expenditures reaching 19.1 percent between 2023 and 2026," said Wu Lianfeng, IDC China vice-president and chief research analyst.Wu said by 2027, 40 percent of the total revenue for Chinas top 2,000 companies will be generated by digital products, services and experiences, while the current figure stands at less than 20 percent.Spending on digital technologies will still be the key focus of both global and Chinese company executives. The number of technology enterprises among Chinas top 500 companies will double by 2027. In addition, by 2024, 40 percent of CEOs from Chinas top 2,000 companies will ink strategic relationships with their cloud computing service providers, according to IDC.The proportion of enterprises expenditures in software as a service, or SaaS, business across the globe is likely to surpass 50 percent in total expenses. By 2026, enterprises that fail to effectively address the talent and digital skills gap in their organizations will constrain revenue growth opportunities by 20 percent.With the blossoming of 5G, big data, AI and other innovative digital technologies, the digital economy is gradually bec...

Tesla reports Q4 deliveries

SAN FRANCISCO, Jan. 2 (Xinhua) -- US electric carmaker Tesla reported on Monday that 405,278 vehicles were delivered in the fourth quarter of 2022.(File photo: Xinhua)Its deliveries in the quarter were up from the 343,830 vehicles sold in the third quarter, but missed the market expectations of around 420,000 to 425,000 units.The electric vehicle company also reported total production of 439,701 vehicles in the fourth quarter, bringing its total annual deliveries to 1.31 million and total production in 2022 to 1.37 million.Tesla reduced $3,250 in early December and 7,500 dollars last week off the price of Model 3 and Model Ys delivered in the United States in December. The company also provided discounts in Mexico and China last quarter.The production at its two new factories, Austin and Berlin, has ramped up in recent months. It has also pumped up production at its factories in Fremont and Shanghai, Tesla said.

Tesla China to start delivering two new models

SHANGHAI, Dec. 30 (Xinhua) -- Tesla China will begin delivering the Model S Plaid and the Model X Plaid to customers on the Chinese mainland in the first half of 2023, the company has said.(File photo: CGTN) The two new vehicle models were debuted at the 5th China International Import Expo, which was held in November.Tesla China said the Model S Plaid has an endurance mileage of 637 km, and it can accelerate from zero to 100 km per hour in just 2.1 seconds, with a maximum speed of 322 km per hour.Teslas Shanghai Gigafactory delivered over 650,000 vehicles in the first 11 months of 2022. In November alone, deliveries from the Shanghai plant totaled 100,291 vehicles, a record high.At present, Tesla has nearly 1,500 supercharging stations and 10,000 supercharging piles on the Chinese mainland.The annual sales of the Shanghai Gigafactory are expected to hit 750,000 vehicles in 2022, according to Cui Dongshu, secretary-general of the China Passenger Car Association.

Chinese tech giant Huawei expects 2022 revenue at 636.9 bln yuan

SHENZHEN, Dec. 30 (Xinhua) -- Chinese tech giant Huawei expects its revenue for 2022 to reach 636.9 billion yuan (about $91.59 billion), according to the companys rotating chairman Eric Xu.The performance was in line with the forecast, Xu said in the companys annual New Years message Friday.Over the past year, Huaweis ICT infrastructure business maintained steady growth, and the decline in device business has abated. It achieved rapid growth in digital power and Huawei Cloud, and took the competitiveness and user experience of intelligent automotive components to new heights, Xu said."In 2022, we successfully pulled ourselves out of crisis mode. The US restrictions are now our new normal, and were back to business as usual," Xu said.In 2021, Huawei brought in revenue of 636.8 billion yuan, a plunge from 891.4 billion yuan in 2020. Its R&D investment reached 142.7 billion yuan in 2021, accounting for 22.4 percent of its annual revenue.Xu said that digitalization and decarbonization are the way forward, and this is where future opportunities lie. Next year, the Shenzhen-headquartered company will continue to strengthen its R&D investment and make its products and solutions more competitive through innovation, reshaping architecture, and systems engineering design.

Omicron infections significantly less severe compared with other major variants: Study

A study published in October shows that patients infected with the Omicron variant were significantly less likely to be admitted to the hospital or to the ICU than those infected with the Alpha, Gamma or Delta variant.Data editor: Zhao HongGraphics designer: Mukesh Mohanan

​Twitter suffers outage, leaving users unable to log on

A Twitter app icon on a mobile phone. (Photo: CFP)Twitter has experienced a massive global outage that leaves users unable to access the social media platform and its features on Thursday. Some were even being logged out abruptly after refreshing their browsers.According to Downdetected.com, which tracks site traffic, the website became unavailable at around 8 am Beijing time (0000GMT) Thursday.Users seeking to log on to the site during the incident were greeted with an error message that read "something went wrong, but dont fret – its not your fault."Several Peoples Daily journalists in Asia were among those experiencing difficulties.Twitter is yet to acknowledge the issue.Concerns about longer and more regular outages increased when Twitter slashed, by some estimates, up to half of its workforce under billionaire Elon Musks tenure.About 7,500 staff were sacked in Musks first week. In his second week, about four in five of the firms 5,500 contractors were released.Earlier this month, Musk confirmed he would step down as chief executive of the company once a suitable replacement was found, in apparent response to a poll he launched that suggested 57 percent of voters, or 10 million votes, favored Musk stepping down just weeks after he took ownership of the company for $44 billion.

China's sci-tech achievements in 2022

China has long aspired to be an innovation powerhouse, and major scientific and technological breakthroughs have been achieved in 2022. Here are some highlights of these sci-tech achievements.Graphic: Liu Muran

China leads in 4 frontier scientific areas

China leads the world in four out of 11 frontier areas of academic research, with major improvements to clinical medicine, astronomy and astrophysics in the past five years, according to the annual report released on Tuesday by the Institutes of Science and Development of the Chinese Academy of Sciences and global analytics firm, Clarivate.The report titled Research Fronts 2022 identified 110 "especially active" and 55 emerging research fronts that are categorized into 11 broad scientific areas based on data from highly cited papers published from 2016 to 2021.On the Research Leadership Index, the United States scored the highest in seven out of the 11 broad categories this year, namely geosciences, clinical medicine, biological sciences, astronomy and astrophysics, mathematics, information science and economics, and psychology and other social sciences.China topped the remaining four frontier scientific areas — agricultural, plant and animal sciences, ecological and environmental sciences, chemistry and materials science, and physics.Chinas global rankings in clinical medicine and astronomy and astrophysics have seen major improvement over the past five years, the report said. Its rank in clinical medicine climbed from 13th on the index in 2018 to 4th this year, while it ranked 7th in astronomy and astrophysics against 19th five years ago.Among the 165 research fronts, the US is most active in 79 and China in 52. The two countries together led nearly 80 percent of all research fronts.Chemistry and materials science has emerged as Chinas most prolific and advantageous field, with the country leading in 10 out of the 13 research topics in this category. Ecological and environmental sciences came in second, with China topping eight out of 12 topics.Gao Hongjun, vice-president of the CAS, said that China would expand openness and cooperation in science and technology, and find new solutions to global challenges with the international scientific comm...

AI-powered technology sees big improvements in UK stroke treatment: analysis

Artificial intelligence technology has tripled the number of UK stroke patients recovering to a point where they can perform daily activities, according to new research released on Tuesday.(Photo: CGTN)Early stage analysis of over 111,000 suspected stroke patients whose care included use of the technology found it reduced the time between being seen by a doctor and treatment beginning by over 60 minutes, leading to improved results.The proportion who were able to resume day-to-day activities increased from 16 to 48 percent, the analysis of the Brainomix e-Stroke imaging platform found.The technology, developed by the UKs med-tech solution firm Brainomix, is being used across 11 stroke treatment networks in the UKs state-funded National Health Service (NHS) to diagnose strokes and determine the best treatment.The platform helps doctors in the interpretation of brain scans and allows them to share the images with specialists worldwide who can access them remotely."AI has the potential to transform our NHS -- delivering faster, more accurate diagnoses and making sure patients can get the treatment they need, when they need it," the UKs health secretary Steve Barclay said in a statement."Brainomix is an incredible example of how this can be achieved, using the power of AI to shave lifesaving minutes off one of the most time-sensitive diagnoses in medicine."Patient Carol Wilson, a teaching assistant, said the prompt diagnosis and treatment she received as a result of the technology meant she was sitting up and texting her family later the same day.The grandmother who has since returned to work said she was "back home and able to walk around two days after having a stroke".Over 85,000 people suffer a stroke in the UK each year.NHS England director of Transformation Dr Timothy Ferris said the treatment was "harnessing the potential that AI has to support expert staff in delivering life-changing care"."Every minute...

Nations should share agricultural tech, ministry official says

Employees of a grain company dry corn at a facility in Heihe, Heilongjiang province. Photo/Xinhua An agricultural official has called on nations to share agricultural technologies to ease global food security problems worsened by the COVID-19 pandemic, climate change and regional conflicts. The wo

Chinese scientists design octopus-inspired color-changing machine

SHANGHAI, Dec. 26 (Xinhua) -- A group of Chinese roboticists have designed a minuscule machine that can mimic octopuses whose cell pigments change color under chemical stress.(Photo: AFP)Fluorescence in response to chemical cues occurs throughout the natural world, such as in cephalopods that change color to evade predators.Scientists from Shanghai Jiao Tong University worked to incorporate this type of chemically responsive fluorescence into a DNA nanomachine, according to a study published in the journal Science Robotics recently.The DNA nanomachine they created fluoresces in response to changes of acidity inside the cell.In in-vitro testing, the nanoscale device identified and quantified the absorption and emission, respectively, of materials through the cell membrane.It can then autonomously change shape in response to pH variations, which, in turn, displays adaptive fluorescent colors, according to the study.The new design offers insights on how to use robots to study living systems and their interactions, according to the study.

Biotechnology turns waste into green feed

BEIJING, Dec. 25 (Xinhua) -- In Longzhou County of south Chinas Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, farmers are busy harvesting sugarcane in the fields. Sugarcane leaves, which used to be waste, will be processed and made into cattle feed at local feed factories.File photo: CFP"In the past, sugarcane leaves and corn stalks were either dumped or burned. Now it can be used as feed. Last year, I earned 26,000 yuan (about 3,728 U.S. dollars) from selling stalks," said Ruan Zhenhong, a local farmer.A new mode of industrial utilization of rice straw has also been developed recently in the city of Changde in central Chinas Hunan Province, as people have recycled rice straw and processed it into silage."Rice straw cannot be burned. The rotted ones left in the fields are an ecological burden. They may affect the subsequent cultivation and lead to plant diseases and insect pests," said Luo Yuanfeng, an official with the bureau of agriculture and rural affairs of Changde.Chinas feed industry is witnessing rapid development, transformation and upgrading. Promoting biological feed technology is an inevitable direction and strategic measure to ensure the high-quality development of Chinas feed industry, said Xin Guochang, an official with the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs.Biological feed is the general term for a new feed resource and feed additive, which is safe, efficient, environmentally friendly and residue-free, and developed by means of modern biotechnology such as genetic engineering, protein engineering, enzyme engineering and fermentation engineering, according to a study report on Chinas biological feed industry.Biological feed enjoys a wide range of materials. It is renewable and less expensive than special feed. The application of biological feed is helpful to developing unconventional feed resources and reducing breeding costs. It is also conducive to saving food and easing the problem of people and ani...

China develops first home-grown DPU chip

BEIJING, Dec. 23 (Xinhua) -- Chinese researchers have developed the countrys first Data Processing Unit (DPU) chip, marking a milestone in the domestic chip industry.A technician works at the workshop of the carmaking-related chip production company in Qinhuangdao, Hebei province. (Photo: Xinhua)DPU is known as the "third main chip" after Central Processing Unit (CPU) and Graphics Processing Unit (GPU). Heterogeneous computing based on the combination of DPU, CPU and GPU has become the mainstream technology of the next-generation intelligent computing centers.The DPU chip was developed by Beijing-based YUSUR Technology Co., Ltd. using 28 nm process. It has the advantages of low cost, excellent performance and low power consumption, and can achieve ultra-low latency of 1.2 microseconds and support up to 200G network bandwidth.The DPU chip will be used in data centers, financial computing and high-performance computing, according to technicians of YUSUR, whose founding members come from a key state laboratory under the Chinese Academy of Sciences."What DPU does is that it builds computing power channels that can promote the flow of computing power resources, reduce CPUs load and release the processing power of a data center," said Yan Guihai, founder and CEO of YUSUR.

Chinese commercial space company to launch stackable satellites

BEIJING, Dec. 23 (Xinhua) -- Chinas private company GalaxySpace is accelerating the research and development of flat-panel stackable satellites, for rapid construction of a satellite internet constellation.A Long March-4C rocket carrying satellites Shiyan-20A and Shiyan-20B is launched from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in northwest China, Dec. 12, 2022. (File photo: Xinhua)GalaxySpace said the design enables dozens of satellites to be stacked on top of each other like tablet personal computers and be launched at the same time on a single rocket. It can greatly improve the use efficiency of a rocket and shorten the construction period of a constellation.Satellite internet will provide extensive broadband connection with satellite communication technology. It is to use the satellites in space playing the role of the base station on the ground for the terrestrial network connection. Under this context, each satellite is a mobile base station in space. It can provide users worldwide with high bandwidth, flexible, and convenient internet access service.In addition, each stackable satellite can carry a flexible solar wing, which features small size, lightweight, and modularization, to help save mass and launch costs, the company told Xinhua.The Beijing-based satellite maker was put into operation in April 2018. It aims to build a broadband satellite constellation deployed in low-Earth orbit and create a global 5G communication network. On March 5, 2022, GalaxySpace launched six broadband communication satellites from the Xichang Satellite Launch Center, which verified the networking technology and service capability of the internet constellation.If the development goes well, the companys stackable satellites are expected to be launched early next year, said Chang Ming, chief commander of the satellite project.

NASA's Perseverance rover deposits first sample on Mars

LOS ANGELES, Dec. 22 (Xinhua) -- The Perseverance Mars rover of the U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) placed a rock sample on the surface of Mars on Wednesday, marking a historic early step in NASAs Mars Sample Return campaign.Images from the Perseverance Rover. (Photo: NASA)The sample was put in a titanium tube. Over the next two months, the rover will deposit a total of 10 tubes at the location, building humanitys first sample depot on another planet, said NASA.Based on the architecture of the Mars Sample Return campaign, the rover would deliver samples to a future robotic lander. The lander would, in turn, use a robotic arm to place the samples in a containment capsule aboard a small rocket that would blast off to Mars orbit, where another spacecraft would capture the sample container and return it safely to Earth, according to NASA.The depot will serve as a backup if the rover can not deliver its samples. In that case, a pair of Sample Recovery Helicopters would be called upon to finish the job, said NASA.The Perseverance rover was launched from Florida in July 30 of 2020, and touched down safely on Mars in February 2021. It is the first rover to bring a sample caching system to Mars that will package promising samples for return to Earth by a future mission.A key objective for Perseverances mission on Mars is astrobiology, including the search for signs of ancient microbial life.

China patches up differences to ensure COP15 a milestone deal

Police officers walk past a sign as they patrol outside the Palais de Congres, during the opening of COP15, the two-week UN biodiversity summit in Montreal, Quebec, Canada Dec 6, 2022. Photo/IC China, as the presidency of COP15, has overcome challenges to patch up differences among various parties

NASA's InSight lander ends mission on Mars after losing contact

File photo LOS ANGELES, Dec. 21 (Xinhua) -- NASAs InSight lander has ended its mission after more than four years of collecting unique science on Mars, NASA announced on Wednesday.Mission controllers at the agencys Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Southern California were unable to contact the lander after two consecutive attempts, which led them to conclude the spacecrafts solar-powered batteries had run out of energy - a state engineers refer to as "dead bus."NASA had previously decided to declare the mission over if the lander missed two communication attempts.The last time InSight communicated with Earth was on Dec. 15, according to NASA.InSight was launched in May 2018 to study the deep interior of Mars. It touched down safely on the Red Planet in late November 2018, marking NASAs first Mars landing since the Curiosity rover in 2012.InSight has detected over 1,300 marsquakes, and made countless scientific discoveries in the past more than four years, according to NASA.The marsquakes, including quakes caused by meteoroid impacts, help scientists determine the age of the planets surface.Data from the highly sensitive seismometer carried by InSight provides scientists a way to study the planets crust, mantle, and core, according to NASA."With InSight, seismology was the focus of a mission beyond Earth for the first time since the Apollo missions, when astronauts brought seismometers to the Moon," said Philippe Lognonné, principal investigator of InSights seismometer. "We broke new ground, and our science team can be proud of all that weve learned along the way."The seismometer was the last science instrument that remained powered on as dust accumulating on the landers solar panels gradually reduced its energy."From measuring marsquakes to detecting meteoroid impacts, InSight gave us a unique perspective of the Red Planet. While the lander may no longer be operational, well continue l...

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