The Chinese Space Programme stretches back to the myth of Chang’e that would ‘reach for the stars’ in China’s ancient Celestial Empire. Wan Hu of the Ming Dynasty in 1500 pioneered the world’s earliest rockets of 47 gunpowder-packed bamboo poles.
Tiānwén (天文) or ‘Quest for Heavenly Truth’ is the name of the Chinese Space Programme after the poet Qū Yuán of Chu in the Warring States Period (475-221 BC).
The Chinese Space Station became completely operational in 2022.
The Chang’e 4 lunar probe was historic in landing on the far side of the moon while Chang’e 5 became the first in 40 years to send back near-side samples.
China aims to put a man on the moon by 2036 and a man on Mars from even 2033 with the ‘Tianwen-1’ rover landing in July 2021.
Find out more about the future of space exploration in Digital Provinces Guide: Countdown to the Chinese Century, Dawn of the Digital Dragon Dynasty: Countdown to the Chinese Century, and Dawn of the Digital Dragon Dynasty: Global Economy e-books in Shop.