China lags in scientific literacyBeijing (UPI) Nov 26, 2010 - China is 20 years behind developed countries when it comes to scientific literacy but is gaining, a survey published Sunday indicates. The China Association for Science and Technology said only 3.27 percent of Chinese have basic scientific literacy, Xinhua reported. That is up sharply from 1.6 percent in 2005 and 2.25 percent in 2007, said Ren Fujun, director of the China Research Institute for Science Popularization, which conducted the survey. Yang Wenzhi, a science popularization director with the association, said the low literacy level stems from the country's slow development prior to the 1980s and poor quality education in the past.
"We are focused on catching up with the developed countries,and the gap is narrowing," Yang said. Among rural Chinese, the survey shows, scientific literacy has grown from 0.72 percent to 1.51 percent, while for urban residents the rate has increased from 2.37 percent to 4.79 percent over the same period. The national survey queried more than 68,000 people between November 2009 and May of this year.
The "Zhongxing-20A" satellite is expected to improve China's radio and television broadcasts, officials at the launch center said in a statement.
It was the 135th launch of a Long March series rocket since April 24, 1970, the state-run news agency said.
China To Launch First Female Astronauts Beijing, China (XNA) Nov 22 - After the Opening Ceremony, Yang Liwei, the Deputy Director of the Chinese
Project, as well as the nation's first astronaut to travel into space, says a second crew of astronauts are now undergoing training. He adds that the country will send its first female astronauts into space by 2012.
Yang said, "The second crew will include 5 men and 2 women. They are taking professional training step by step, according to our plan, to prepare the docking process with the space station and other missions about the space laboratory. I think people can see our crew in the Shenzhou 9 and 10 spacecraft in 2012."
HK, mainland to build joint space lab Hong Kong (XNA) Nov 26 - The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) and the China Academy of Space Technology (CAST) Wednesday announced the establishment of the Joint Laboratory specializing in Precision Engineering Projects for use in Space.
President of CAST Yang Baohua has led a six-member senior delegation to sign the pact with Acting President of PolyU Philip Chan on 15 Nov.
Under the agreement, CAST will donate some sophisticated equipment, including a vibration platform and vacuum device for mechanical and thermo testing, which worth at 5 million RMB (about 751,879 U.S. dollars) for the new lab.
In addition, both parties will jointly invest 10 million RMB of research funding for the lab in the next five years, and the research work will be carried out under the supervision of an experts committee.
This is the second important deal signed by PolyU and CAST within six months' time. During PolyU President Timothy Tong's visit to Beijing in June, the university and CAST also signed an agreement to formalize research collaboration between two parties relating to China's lunar exploration program.
Established in 1968, CAST is the most important research base for the advancement of space technology and equipment on the Chinese mainland. It is an integral unit of the China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation.
PolyU said it will establish one or two special Research Institutes to support the further advancement of space research, and explore the possibility of turning its space technology for civilian use in the future.