24 May 2013
On 13 June 2013, Liu Yang, first Chinese female taikonaut, is expected to visit the United Nations in Vienna. In the evening on that day she will give a public appearance in the "Naturhistorisches Museum Vienna". The event is jointly organised by the United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs UNOOSA and the Association of Space Explorers - ASE. Next to Liu Yang, Valentina Tereshkova, Roberta Bondar, Janet L. Kavandi, and Chiaki Mukai are planned to attend the event in the museum, currently set to last from 19:00 h to 21:00 h. More details to follow within the next days.
20 May 2013
During a press event announcing the flight of British ESA astronaut Timothy Peake, BBC journalist Jonathan Amos, took the opportunity to ask ESA's Director of Human Spaceflight and Operations about ESA's plans for flight opportunities with China. Dr. Thomas Reiter answered: "We are exploring this possibility. We had some exchange with the Chinese Manned Space Agency. Some of my colleagues were visiting them in Beijing. We had a delegation visiting us at the European Astronaut Centre for exchanging some views on the training environment, training programmes, on technical aspects of rendezvous and docking, life support systems and of course scientific work. We have assigned now three colleagues from the European Astronaut Centre to language training. One astronaut actually is among this group. We are looking to the possibility also to explore flight opportunities with our Chinese partners. But once again: these are little steps that need to be seen. It is a first exchange of ideas and of learning to know each other."
18 May 2013
China is expected to invest 7 billion yuan ($1.13 billion) to support the development of industries related to the country's Beidou satellite navigation system before 2015, an industry insider said. The Ministry of Transport required all tour coaches, long-distance buses and vehicles carrying dangerous goods in nine provinces, or around 80,000 vehicles, to install the Beidou system before June, or the vehicles' permits may not be approved.
Ran Chengqi, spokesman for the China Satellite Navigation Office added that automotive navigation equipment is now entering mass production and will gradually be launched into the consumer market.
Wei Baoguo, a researcher with the China Electronics Technology Group Corp, said that his company is designing a rescue system based on Beidou to be used at scenic spots, which will soon be promoted nationwide.
16 May 2013
The Pentagon will continue for another year the lease of a Chinese commercial satellite to provide communications for its Africa Command. The use of China’s Apstar-7 satellite will be extended under a $10.7 million lease through the government solutions unit of a U.S. company, Harris CapRock Communications, the Pentagon said yesterday in an e-mailed statement.