new war is emerging and this one will be fought outside of our planet. China and the United States have been fighting in what people call Space Race 2.0. If the Soviet Union was once in the lead of Space exploration, China is now starting to take the lead, and NASA is trying to make the rest of the world aware of this.
Between the United States and China, the race to the moon is becoming more competitive, and the outcome might be decided within the next two years. According to NASA Administrator Bill Nelson, Beijing may try to take control of the most resource-rich areas of the lunar surface or even keep the United States out.
If NASA itself is saying this, it means that China is no joke, and its financial muscle talks for itself.
The Chinese space program has come a long way since its humble beginnings in the 1960s. Today, China is a major player in the global space industry and has significantly contributed to space exploration and development.
One of China’s major achievements in space was the successful launch of its first satellite, Dongfanghong-1, in 1970. This was followed by the launch of China’s first manned spacecraft, Shenzhou-5, in 2003. Since then, China has sent a number of taikonauts (astronauts) into space and has established a permanently manned space station, Tiangong-2.
In addition to its manned space missions, China has also made significant progress in the exploration of the moon. In 2013, China’s Chang’e-3 spacecraft successfully landed on the moon, making China only the third country to achieve a soft landing on the lunar surface. The Chang’e-4 spacecraft became the first spacecraft to land on the moon’s far side in 2019.
China has also made strides in the development of its space-based military capabilities. In 2007, China conducted an anti-satellite missile test, which drew international condemnation. However, China has stated that its space program is for peaceful purposes and is aimed at advancing scientific and technological knowledge.
Overall, the Chinese space program has come a long way in a short amount of time and has made significant contributions to the global space industry.
Due to the political fights between China and the US, the Chinese space program has slowly started to work more isolated. One of their biggest plans is to take over the Moon by colonizing it and hopefully start moving as many of their citizens as soon as possible.
This is not necessarily a sign of power from China, but they are trying to solve their infrastructure problem as the country is too small for the large population living there today.
These successes in human spaceflight, together with more recent missions to the moon and Mars, strengthen the case that China is not engaging in a direct race with the United States for space supremacy, but is instead plodding along in a space marathon. Long interviews with senior Chinese space officials conducted by The New York Times during a rare foreign media visit to China’s tightly guarded desert rocket site for the Nov. 29 launch confirmed that the country’s space program is doing well toward its long-term goals.
Officials from NASA, as well as SpaceX, are saying that China is on track with their plans, and if everything goes accordingly, they could be colonizing the moon in the next two years.