The Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) has selected candidates for its next round of space missions, expected to be launched between 2026 and 2030, among them There are also plans to search for extraterrestrial life.
According to SpaceNews, it is expected that of the 13 proposed missions, between five and seven will be selected for launch. The new missions will be part of the Chinese Academy of Sciences' Strategic Priority Program III (SPP III), also known as the New Horizons Program. It should be noted that this program has nothing to do with NASA's New Horizons mission.
Three of these proposed missions deal with astrophysics and astronomy research:
- The "Timing and "Advanced X-ray Polarization" or "eXTP", studies the state of matter in extreme conditions of density, gravity and magnetism and searches for gravitational waves and neutrino sources. (DSL) places a small constellation of satellites in lunar orbit. where they are shielded from the interference of ground waves and probes the unexplored regions of the electromagnetic spectrum in search of signals from the early life of the visible universe. (DAMPE), launched in 2015, is looking for signs of dark matter.
Four of the proposed missions are efforts in solar physics:
- The "Chinese Heliospheric Interstellar Probe" (CHIME).
- The "Solar Ring Mission" (SOR) proposes to deploy three spacecraft at a distance of one astronomical unit (AU), which is the distance from the Earth to the Sun. , will be used to collect data about the Sun and the inner heliosphere (Horsphere).
- The Solar Polar Orbiting Observatory (SPO) examines the Sun's poles while the spacecraft is in a high-inclination orbit.
- The "Earth Hidden Solar Eclipse Observatory" (ESEO) is designed to orbit the Earth-Sun Lagrangian point 2 and study the Sun's inner corona. It should be noted that NASA's James Webb Space Telescope is also located at the L2 Earth-Sun point.
Four of the planned missions are carried out with the aim of studying the Earth and other members of the solar system:
- Asteroid Sample Return (ASR) will explore asteroid 1989 ML and return samples to Earth.
- Venus Volcano Climate Imaging and Probe (VOICE) mission ) with the aim of studying the geological and atmospheric processes on Venus.
- The Low Earth Orbit Climate and Atmospheric Components Exploration Satellites (CACES) project has proposed collecting a lot of data about the Earth's climate and atmosphere.
- The Multiscale Ocean Surface Current Observation Mission (OSCOM) uses satellite Doppler radar to study ocean dynamics and energy.
Finally, two missions, Deep Space will search for habitable exoplanets:
- The "Nearby Habitable Exoplanet Survey" (CHES) uses microarcsecond relativistic astronomical techniques to study 100 M stars. The Sun orbiter is 33 light-years away from Earth.
- The Earth 2.0 (ET) mission will search for Earth-sized exoplanets that have similar orbits around Sun-like stars and from a The instrument uses seven telescopes orbiting the Earth-Sun Lagrangian 2 orbit.
Each of the 13 missions proposed by the New Horizons program by the Chinese Academy of Sciences review committee, based on criteria such as budget requirements, level The technological readiness and production speed of the required technologies will be assessed before China's 15th Five-Year Plan, which begins in 2026. The program also includes funding for research projects that will support future scientific missions.
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Cover photo: Graphic design of an exoplanet