China through the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) has a series of missions space which is planned to launch in 2026 to 2030, which includes a mission to find new habitable planets.
China’s space mission is said to be increasingly aggressive, triggering accusations by the United States Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) that the Bamboo Curtain Country wants to control the Moon alone.
This accusation is based on several reasons, such as China’s plan to establish a base on the Moon in 2035 to the country’s aggressiveness in its space program. However, the Bamboo Curtain country denied the accusations given to it.
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In addition to exploring the Moon, China has planned 13 space missions, some of which will go into their latest project. Reported from Spaceabout five to seven missions will fit into the project.
China’s newest space project is named the CAS Strategic Priority Program III (SPP III), also known as the New Horizons Program.
The Strategic Priority Program on Space Science (SPP) is under the supervision of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), which has established China’s series of space science satellites since its inception.
Quoted from a paper published in the Chinese Journal of Space Science (CJSS) on Tuesday (28/6), the Phase I program (SPP I) has made a number of major scientific achievements, while SPP II is currently being implemented.
The programs that become mission candidates in the SPP III project are divided into several fields, including heliophysics, astronomy and astrophysics, research on habitable planets, and research on Earth and members of the Solar System.
Here’s a list of China’s 13 space missions slated to start in 2026, as quoted: SpaceNews:
1. The Chinese Heliosphere Interstellar Intermediate Explorer (CHIME).
2. The Solar Ring (SOR) mission proposed using a trio of spacecraft orbiting a single astronomical unit (AU) to collect data about the Sun and the inner heliosphere.
3. The Solar Polar-orbit Observatory (SPO) will study the sun’s poles while in orbit with a high tilt.
4. The Earth-occulted Solar Eclipse Observatory (ESEO) is designed to orbit the Earth-Sun Lagrange Point 2 to study the Sun’s inner corona.
Astrophysics and astronomy
5. Enhanced X-ray Timing and Polarimetry or the eXTP mission aims to study the state of matter under conditions of extreme density, gravity, and magnetism and search for gravitational waves and neutrino sources.
6. The Discovering the Sky at the Longest Wavelength (DSL) mission will put a small constellation of satellites into lunar orbit where the satellites can be shielded from terrestrial interference and study undiscovered areas of the electromagnetic spectrum that could reveal the oldest signals in the universe.
7. The Dark Matter Particle Explorer-2 (DAMPE-2) will follow up on the DAMPE mission launched in 2015 and search for evidence of dark matter.
Search for habitable exoplanets
8. The Closeby Habitable Exoplanet Survey (CHES) will use micro-arcsecond relative astrometry techniques to study 100 sun-like stars within 33 light-years from Earth.
9. The Earth 2.0 (ET) mission will specifically search for Earth-sized exoplanets that have similar orbits around Sun-like stars using the instruments of seven Earth-Sun orbiting L2 telescopes.
Study of the Earth and members of the solar system
10. The E-type Asteroid Sample Return (ASR) will explore asteroid 1989 ML and send samples to Earth.
11. The Venus Volcano Imaging and Climate Explorer (VOICE) mission is aimed at studying the geological and atmospheric processes that occur on Venus.
12. The low-Earth orbital Climate and Atmospheric Components Exploration Satellite (CACES) proposes collecting data on Earth’s climate and atmosphere.
13. Ocean Surface Current Multiscale Observation Mission (OSCOM) will use Doppler satellite radar to study oceanographic dynamics and energy.
Each proposed mission to the New Horizons Program will be assessed by the CAS committee based on a number of criteria, including budget requirements, level of technology readiness, and how quickly the technology needed can be made for China’s 15th Five-Year Plan, which will begin in 2026.