In an effort to reach all corners of the Earth and moon, China is building its first state-constructed icebreaker for Arctic expeditions, and will launch its third lunar explorer and first lander next year, the state-run news agency said this week.
China already has a massive A-2 class icebreaker, capable of breaking through ice 1.2 meters (3.93 feet) thick, but the ship was purchased from the Ukraine. Xuelong, or "Snow Dragon," is currently on its fifth Arctic expedition, with Chinese scientists on board performing various studies, according to the Xinhua news agency. It is stopping at 33 observation stations on the Atlantic and Pacific sides of the Arctic, and crossed the Arctic Circle on July 20. But the new ship will be even more powerful, capable of slicing through ice 1.5 meters (4.9 feet) thick.
This new ship will be built in China, and designed by Finnish firm Aker Arctic Technology Inc. The vessel will weigh in at 8,000 metric tons and be able to sail for 20,000 nautical miles, with 6,200 square feet of laboratory space.
China's officially stated interest in the Arctic includes a longing for permanent status on the Arctic Council, an eight-member council that includes Canada, Denmark/Greenland, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Sweden, Russia and the United States. As the Arctic continues to melt, the Northwest Passage could offer shorter transport routes between China and Europe, so this is clearly an economic opportunity, too.
Meanwhile, China is sending a third lunar probe in 2013, this time with a lander. China already sent two lunar orbiters, Chang'e-1 and 2, which are all named for the Chinese goddess of the moon. Chang'e-3's lander will make a "soft landing" on the moon and explore the surface. The lunar craft is set to launch from the Xichang Satellite Launch Center in Sichuan province in the second half of 2013.
When China sends its first Mars rover, we will definitely let you know.
China is getting greedy and like Japan before WWII is capable of setting off a world wide war to stifle it's expansionism.
really, no space program? who do you think are finding exoplanets, sending another rover to mars, helping private companies get into space? guess you either are totally ingnorant or just a troll? either way, as you state, get your head out of your a##, negative cheers
@Drupchuck..the only troll on here is you. What exactly is a negative cheers?? A "Booo"..lol
@D13 couldn't agree with you more. This is what happens when a society becomes to decadent. America is full of kids that idolize Jersey Shore...think about that. America will one day be the country it once was, but first all the self centered iphone addicts will have to suffer through a poverty stricken middle age and then their children will rise up.
what Clifford explained I'm alarmed that a mother can make $4989 in 1 month on the internet. have you seen this web site jijr.com/chjz
I do not see China as being greedy but rather as taking the initiative. There is nothing stopping the U.S.A. or other industrial European countries from expanding in these fields also. Also, the technological lead that the U.S. and Europe have would make further endeavours in these areas a lot easier.
I find the projects that China is undertaking a wise investment in their own future. The Chinese scientists and engineers are solving problems and gaining the technological know-how that can also be applied to the development and production of consumer goods.
Drunk Chunk, you aggravating others again, calling all those that disagree with your own perspective, trolls. It is your favorite slang word. You have called yourself a NASA buff or science buff in the past, why don't you offer some useful information or am I just asking too much of you, lol.