China aims to send its first manned missions to Mars in 2033, followed by regular flights, under a long-term plan to build a permanent manned base on the Red Planet and explore for its resources.
The plan that would escalate a race with the United States to establish a human presence on Mars was revealed in detail for the first time. After China, for the first time, landed a robotic probe on that planet In the middle of May.
- Beijing has previously announced its intention to build a base on the moon in cooperation with Russia, and it is also in the process of building Chinese space stationWhich is considered to some extent “competitive” for the International Space Station, especially since US law prevents China’s participation in the International Space Station.
- China is preparing an integrated system of satellites that can compete with the GPS system owned by the US government.
- There have been recent reports from the United States that China is working on arming a system capable of targeting American satellites and securing military superiority for itself in space.
What about the mission?
Wang Shaojun, head of the China Academy of Launch Vehicle Technology, China’s main rocket maker, said via video link at a conference on space exploration recently hosted by Russia that manned missions to Mars are being planned for 2033, 2035, 2037, 2041 and so on. Then.
Humans’ stay on Mars requires crews to be able to exploit the planet’s resources, such as extracting any water beneath its surface, generating oxygen on site and producing electricity. China will also have to develop technology to bring astronauts back to Earth. An unmanned mission is expected to bring samples of the planet’s soil by the end of the 2030s.
The US Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) is developing technology to send astronauts to Mars during the 1930s.
China’s plan includes fleets of spacecraft moving between Earth and the Red Planet and the development of its resources on a large scale, Wang said, adding that to reduce the flight time, the spacecraft should make use of energy generated by nuclear reactions in the form of heat and electricity, as well as traditional chemical engines.
He said China should complete the round trip in a total time of “a few hundred days”.
China also plans to establish a base at the south pole of the moon and will send robotic missions to asteroids and to Jupiter near 2030.
Last week, China sent three astronauts to a space station that has not yet been built, in its first manned mission since 2016, expanding its growing presence near Earth, defying the leadership of the United States in this field.