Wednesday November 20, 2019
Home World China Inches ...

China Inches Closer to Complete and Operationalise its First Space Station

China on Monday came to a step closer to complete its first space station by 2020

1
//
Representational image. Wikimedia

Beijing, October 17, 2016: With the launching of its manned spacecraft, Shenzhou-11, into orbit in a project designed to develop its ability to explore space, China on Monday came to a step closer to complete its first space station by 2020 and operationalise services two years later.

The spacecraft, launched from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Centre, has two astronauts on board — Jing Haipeng, 49, who has already been in space twice, and 37-year-old Chen Dong.

NewsGram brings to you current foreign news from all over the world

They will dock with the experimental Tiangong 2 space lab and spend 30 days there, the longest stay in space by Chinese astronauts.

China was earlier prevented from participating in the US-led International Space Station (ISS). With the ISS set to retire in 2024, the Chinese station offers a promising alternative, and China will be the only country with a permanent space station.

The Chinese space station will be more “economically efficient and informationised” than the ISS, Zhou Jianping, Chief Engineer of China’s manned space programme, told Xinhua news agency following the launch of Tiangong-2 on September 15 this year.

It will be able to house a maximum of six astronauts at the same time and manned missions will become routine once the space station enters service, Zhou said.

NewsGram brings to you top news around the world today

The ISS, launched in 1998 and involving the US, Russia, Canada, Japan, and the participating countries of the European Space Agency, has been visited by 18 countries — and counting, according to the mission website.

“The space station has been continuously occupied since November 2000. In that time, 222 people from 18 countries have visited,” NASA said.

Measuring 34.1 feet in length and up to 10.9 feet in diameter, the tube-like Tiangong-2 is hardly the size of a palace. The ISS, on the other hand, measures 357 feet end-to-end — equivalent to the length of a football field.

According to Zhu Zongpeng, Chief Designer of China’s space lab system, Tiangong-2’s workload includes POLAR, a collaboration between Swiss, Polish and Chinese institutions to study gamma ray bursts, the most energetic events in the universe.

A cold atomic space clock, which scientists say only loses one second in about 30 million years, is expected to make future navigation more accurate.

Scientists will also conduct a space-Earth quantum key distribution and laser communications experiment, to facilitate space-to-ground quantum communication.

After launching its first manned mission in 2003, China staged a spacewalk in 2008 and sent Tiangong-1 into space in 2011.

Check out NewsGram for latest international news updates

It succeeded in a manned docking in space in 2012 to become the third country to do so after the US and Russia, and landed its Yutu rover on the moon a year later.

China also aims to send the Chang’e-5 probe to the moon, and to land a probe on Mars by 2021. (IANS)

  • Antara

    Another major Chinese venture! Wonderful news!

Next Story

This AI System Can Evade Censorship In India, China and Kazakhstan

Researchers develop an AI tool that evades censorship in India, China and Kazakhstan

0
censorship
(AI)-based system automatically learns to evade censorship in India, China and Kazakhstan. Pixabay

Researchers have developed an Artificial Intelligence (AI)-based system that automatically learns to evade censorship in India, China and Kazakhstan.

The tool, called Geneva (short for Genetic Evasion), found dozens of ways to circumvent censorship by exploiting gaps in censors’ logic and finding bugs that the researchers said would have been virtually impossible for humans to find manually.

The researchers are scheduled to introduce Geneva during a peer-reviewed talk at the Association for Computing Machinery’s 26th Conference on Computer and Communications Security in London on Thursday.

“With Geneva, we are, for the first time, at a major advantage in the censorship arms race,” said Dave Levin, an assistant professor of computer science at the University of Maryland in the US and senior author of the paper.

“Geneva represents the first step toward a whole new arms race in which artificial intelligence systems of censors and evaders compete with one another. Ultimately, winning this race means bringing free speech and open communication to millions of users around the world who currently don’t have them,” Levin said.\

censorship, AI
This AI system that evades censorship is called ‘Geneva’. Pixabay

To demonstrate that Geneva worked in the real world against undiscovered censorship strategies, the team ran Geneva on a computer in China with an unmodified Google Chrome browser installed.

By deploying strategies identified by Geneva, the user was able to browse free of keyword censorship.

The researchers also successfully evaded censorship in India, which blocks forbidden URLs, and Kazakhstan, which was eavesdropping on certain social media sites at the time, said a statement from the University of Maryland.

All information on the Internet is broken into data packets by the sender’s computer and reassembled by the receiving computer.

One prevalent form of Internet censorship works by monitoring the data packets sent during an Internet search.

The censor blocks requests that either contain flagged keywords (such as “Tiananmen Square” in China) or prohibited domain names (such as “Wikipedia” in many countries).

When Geneva is running on a computer that is sending out web requests through a censor, it modifies how data is broken up and sent, so that the censor does not recognise forbidden content or is unable to censor the connection.

Known as a genetic algorithm, Geneva is a biologically inspired type of AI that Levin and his team developed to work in the background as a user browses the web from a standard Internet browser.

Like biological systems, Geneva forms sets of instructions from genetic building blocks. But rather than using DNA as building blocks, Geneva uses small pieces of code.

Censorship
By deploying strategies identified by Geneva, the user is able to browse free of keyword censorship. Pixabay

Individually, the bits of code do very little, but when composed into instructions, they can perform sophisticated evasion strategies for breaking up, arranging or sending data packets.

The tool evolves its genetic code through successive attempts (or generations). With each generation, Geneva keeps the instructions that work best at evading censorship and kicks out the rest.

Also Read- Ram Mandir Resolution should Help India to Reinvent its Nationhood by Creating New Sense of Unity

Geneva mutates and cross breeds its strategies by randomly removing instructions, adding new instructions, or combining successful instructions and testing the strategy again.

Through this evolutionary process, Geneva is able to identify multiple evasion strategies very quickly, said the study. (IANS)