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The ISS  (Source: NASA)
China wants in, but the U.S. may not allow it

Chinese space officials today announced the country is still willing to work alongside the United States on extraterrestrial endeavors, especially the International Space Station.

"We sincerely hope to conduct cooperation with the United States in the field of space," said Li Xueyong, Vice Minister of Space and Technology.  "At some point we hope to take part in the activities relating to international space stations."

Sixteen nations are currently involved in the ISS project, but China is not one of them even though the country has one of the fastest growing space programs in the world.  China would ultimately like to have an astronaut stationed on the ISS in the future, but must convince the United States and other partners to allow a communist nation to be allowed to participate in the project.

Li did not clearly specify how China hopes to help the participating nations work on the ISS.

State media in China reported the country plans to launch its first lunar probe before November, only weeks after Japan launched one into orbit.  In 2003, China became the third nation to successfully launch an astronaut into orbit with no help from other nations.

There is growing concern over the country's expanding space program, which reached a new level after China announced it had destroyed an old satellite last January by shooting a land-based missile to destroy it.  Critics of the launch claim China could theoretically launch a missile to destroy active military satellites, though Chinese officials still claim the nation has only peaceful plans for space.

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RE: china is a nice place
By ss284 on 10/16/2007 7:52:03 PM , Rating: 2
What has china gotten done in the past 50 years that makes them so amazing?

RE: china is a nice place
By Flunk on 10/16/2007 11:55:55 PM , Rating: 2
Manufactured everything the "developed world" wants to buy. Seriously, if China cut off trade to the US the economy would be essentially dead in the water.

RE: china is a nice place
By wordsworm on 10/17/2007 12:17:40 AM , Rating: 2
What has china gotten done in the past 50 years that makes them so amazing?
Who cares about the last 50 years. Let's just say that the world owes thanks to many of its inventions over the last 4,000. Even the stuff that had been attributed to the Persians is not being found to be in fact from China. Here's just a short list of China's incalculably important contributions to the world.
1) Ceramics (they're not just good for dishes!)
2) the compass
3) the printing press
4) the rudder
5) (for boats) compartments that allow a boat, even wtih a pierced hull, to float.
6) the 3 sail boat which allowed boats to sail even when the wind wasn't directly behind them.
7) gun powder
8) cast iron
9) The computer (think non-digital)
10) earthquake sensors
11) navigation by stars (the Arabs got that from China)

The best question would be 'Where would the world be without China?' followed by 'if the US doesn't partner with them, they'll do it anyways because it's China.'

If you want to look at some of the amazing achievements in the last 50 years, only a few things come to mind. The world's largest dam is pretty much complete and an impressive railway to Lhasa that has some really impressive technologies that make it possible.

RE: china is a nice place
By oldman42 on 10/17/2007 12:48:06 AM , Rating: 2
Back in the old days China actually invented stuff. In the last 50 years they have acquired most if not all of their technologies by reverse engineering patented tech by agreeing to manufacture it for 10 units of currency to the rest of the world, then selling the copied materials for 2 units within China. This has spurred their economic growth. They openly disavow all copyrights and patents which are recognized by the rest of the world. Remember the article about CHD-DVD? Remarkably similar to HD-DVD, yet completely royalty free. Ever look at their domestic manufactured automobiles? Nearly every vehicle is directly attributable to a Euro, Japanese, or US car design.

I don't want them in on the ISS 'cos Company A has the rights to design and manufacture Component X, but I guarantee that component will suddenly show up on a China only product with no credit to the designers.

RE: china is a nice place
By cheetah2k on 10/17/07, Rating: 0
RE: china is a nice place
By adam92682 on 10/17/2007 1:20:47 AM , Rating: 2
What has china gotten done in the past 50 years that makes them so amazing?
Orange Chicken?

“Then they pop up and say ‘Hello, surprise! Give us your money or we will shut you down!' Screw them. Seriously, screw them. You can quote me on that.” -- Newegg Chief Legal Officer Lee Cheng referencing patent trolls
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