Prof. Du Shanyi, the CAE academician, delivered a lecture on the ideological values of Astronautics


On May 25, 2021, Professor Du Shanyi, a leading figure in mechanics and composite materials and a CAE (Chinese Academy of Engineering) Academician, delivered a lecture on the “Mission of Strengthening Space Power and the Mindset of Engineering Science” at Qihang Forum of the School of Astronautics. As one of the events in the fifth Teaching Festival that highlights the cultivation of root, soul, wisdom, and heart, the lecture addressed the ideological values of astronautics in a vivid way.

Professor Du Shanyi began with a review on the overall human achievement in spaceflight and the journey of Chinese space industry. From his perspective, with a history of sixty-five years, Chinese space industry has attained magnificently in six aspects: space transportation capacity, space infrastructure, manned spaceflight, far space exploration, near space exploration, and international collaboration. In this expedition towards the faraway, HITers have made enormous contribution. He exemplified how HIT research teams contributed their wisdom and effort in the satellite R&D, manned spaceflight, Chang’e lunar exploration, and Tianwen’s exploration on Mars. Looking ahead, just as General Secretary Xi Jinping accentuated, “To explore the vast universe, to develop space programmes, to develop a strong power in the space industry, these are our persistent pursuit of the dream in spaceflight,” Professor Du was ambitious and passionate when talking about the agenda for strengthening the space power.

Following that, with an article entitled the Content and Task of Modern Mechanics by Qian Xuesen, the dean when he was an undergraduate, Professor Du indicated that “engineering science is the bridge between natural science and engineering technology.” He exemplified some specific applications of the engineering science way of thinking with his own research work. The professor classified science and technological innovation into two categories: gradual innovation and disruptive innovation. He pointed out five features of the disruptive innovation: foresight, transcendence, mutation, timeliness, and risk. The aerospace science and technology were a cross-disciplinary field that combines information, electronics, energy, material, and many more. It was only with comprehensive innovative breakthrough that we could have radical betterment and realize our dream of having a strong space power.

Recalling the history of HIT and looking ahead to a new centennial, Professor Du indicated that innovation-driven was talent-driven in essence. Aerospace engineering stands out as a cross-disciplinary and cutting-edge field, which demands a large number of high-level talents that have cross-disciplinary knowledge. With its 101 years of history, and particularly after the founding of the new China, HIT has forged a great number of significant national treasure and trained a great number of eminent talents under the leadership of the Communist Party of China. With the prospect of the new centennial, we need to undertake national major research projects and engineering projects with an innovative mind to develop by ploughing deep in the field of engineering science.

Towards the end of the lecture, Professor Du Shanyi expressed his hope that students aspired to be engineers with outstanding quality in science and scientists with outstanding competency in engineering.




Scene of the lecture