Translated by: Zhao Yuhang
Edited by: D. Parker
On April 24th, 2018 Harbin Institute of Technology hosted the “2018 China Aerospace Day.” The lilacs were blooming while students thrived in a wave of knowledge! The “Aerospace Day” was organized by the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, the National Defense Bureau of Science, Technology and Industry, the National Space Administration, and the Heilongjiang Provincial Government. The theme for the day was “Contribute to a New Era in Aerospace”. Guided by Xin Jinping’s thought of socialism with Chinese characteristics in the new era, the event’s purpose was to call people from all walks of life to profound learning and the implementation of the philosophies of the 19th National Congress. In addition there was an emphasis on the strategy of innovation-driven development with integrated military and civilian development. The challenge was to inherit and develop the “aerospace spirit”, and unite the power of all Chinese citizens so that we can accelerate the development of China as an aerospace power.
Miao Wei, head of the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology and Zhang Qingwei, the Secretary of the Heilongjiang Provincial Party Committee both attended the opening ceremony. Zhang Kejian, the vice secretary and vice director of the Party Branch of the Bureau of National Defense Science and Technology presented to HIT the banner which read “China Aerospace Day.” Wu Yanhua, the vice director of the Bureau of National Defense Science and Technology, as well as the vice director of the National Space Agency, presided over the opening ceremony.
In his speech, Miao Wei shared, “ ‘China Aerospace Day’ has become a significant link for passing on the “aerospace spirit”, and the cohesion of great Chinese power. Not only has it been an important platform for the popularization of the study of aerospace and the development of an innovative culture, it has become an important window for the exhibition of aerospace achievements and the expansion of international cooperation.” MiaoWei went on to say, “The new era of aerospace is innovative, integrated and ever-expanding. I hope aerospace science and technology engineers will continue to focus on their mission with innovation providing solid contributions. I hope the young can set lofty goals and strive for the development of China’s science and technology, so our nation will stand top on of the world stage. I hope your dreams become reality as you make achievements in the new era. I also hope all walks of life and our international counterparts can continuously support the development of China’s aerospace industries as we promote the development of human civilization and social progress”.
Li Haitao, member of the Standing Committee of the Heilongjiang Provincial Party Committee, and the executive vice governor, said in his speech, that, “This event is an affirmation of the development of Heilongjiang’s aerospace industries. It is a significant engine for the promotion of Heilongjiang’s revitalization, and a new starting point for Heilongjiang’s aerospace industries. With a solid industrial base in aerospace, Heilongjiang province has made important contributions to the national aerospace industry. The aerospace industry is not only a strategic, emerging industry or typical military-civilian integrated industry, but also a key industry offering a solid foundation for rapid development in Heilongjiang province. The event will provide us with a rare opportunity to propel the expansion of this “new frontier” in new growth areas.”
At the opening ceremony, the Rstar of the Chang’e IV Mission along with the two small satellites it will carry, which were developed by HIT, were unveiled. They were given the names “Que Qiao”, “Longjiang No.1”, and “Longjiang No.2” respectively. The Chang’e IV probe, which is scheduled to be launched near the end of 2018, will achieve the first landing on the far side of the moon. The Rstar of the Chang’e IV Mission will be launched in May to provide the relay communication support between the earth and the moon. The small satellites to be carried on the Rstar will achieve lunar orbit. In doing so, China will be able to implement ultra-long wave astronomical observations.
At the ceremony, The National Space Agency, the China Meteorological Administration, and the Asia Pacific Space Cooperation Organization signed and issued a letter of cooperation. The three parties will combine the “Belt and Road” initiative with the strategic plan of the Asia-Pacific Space Cooperation Organization together. This will give international access to the advantages of China’s series of meteorological satellites (Fengyun meteorological satellites). With the optimization of allocation and the increase of coverage rate, the ability for weather forecasting, disaster prevention and mitigation, as well as response to climate changes will be advanced in the countries involved in “Belt and Road” initiatives, especially those of the Asia Pacific Space Cooperation Organization.
Other events held at the opening ceremonies included the award ceremony of the“Aerospace Science Education Base”, the China Aerospace Innovation and Entrepreneurship Competition, and the first award ceremony for the “Special Award for Aerospace Fund.”
After the opening ceremonies, the “First China Aerospace Conference” kicked off. The conference’s purpose is to facilitate the most influential academic exchanges and promote studies which prepare students for China’s aerospace industries. More than 2,000 attended the three days of forums and thematic activities. Among these were leaders from universities, industry, and research institutions along with experts, scholars and astronauts from home and abroad. They exchanged and discussed their ideas about the development of aerospace. A central aspect of the discussions was the revitalization of Heilongjiang province through aerospace technology. Other key topics included the development and innovation of aerospace technology, the application of remote sensing, international cooperation, the development of commercial aerospace industries, aerospace education and culture.
The theme of the “China Aerospace Day” this year was more prominent and distinctive. There was a higher number of attendees who actively participated in the expanded conference. Over 20 series of activities were offered including “The Week of Popularization of Science’, the 2018 ASTO Chinese and Russian Undergraduate Micro-Nano Satellite Workshop, aerospace knowledge competition and the commemoration of Ma Zuguang’s 90th birthday. Strong support was also given by the international community. Dippy Pippen, the director of the United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs, sent a congratulatory video. Envoys stationed in China from various countries were present. In addition representatives from the United States, Russia, UK along with other countries participated in the activities.
With a theme of “jointly contributing to the new era of aerospace”, various relevant national ministries and commissions, the local national defense science and technology industry administrations, representatives from aerospace industries, along with schools and other organizations held nearly 300 distinctive and wonderful themed activities. These included flag raising ceremonies, scientific lectures, displays and demonstrations, knowledge competitions, and micro-videos. Those in attendance came from 31provinces, autonomous regions, municipalities directly under the central government as well as two special administrative regions: Hong Kong and Macao.