1. Beidou satellite system completes in-orbit construction
The final satellite to complete the third-generation network of China's Beidou Navigation Satellite System was launched on June 23, marking a milestone in the nation's space endeavors.
As the countdown ticked down to zero at 9:43 am at the Xichang Satellite Launch Center in Sichuan province, eight engines on the first stage and four boosters of a Long March 3B carrier rocket spat orange flames as they lifted the 19 story-tall vehicle and the satellite into the cloudy skies.
The deployment of the satellite marked the completion of the in-orbit construction of Beidou, one of four global navigation networks, along with the United States' GPS, Russia's GLONASS, and the European Union's Galileo.
2. China launches human trials for new COVID-19 vaccine
China has launched the world's first human trial of its recombinant protein vaccine candidate against COVID-19, which is a new type of vaccine that has shown to be safe and effective in animal models and is easy to mass produce.
The vaccine was approved for phase one clinical trials by the National Medical Products Administration on June 19.
It is the nation's third vaccine technology, after the adenovirus vector vaccine and inactivated vaccine, to enter clinical trials in China. Chinese scientists and companies are now testing six vaccine candidates in humans, including one vector, four inactivated, and one recombinant protein vaccine.
3. China launches hydropower unit with largest capacity
On June 21, a million-kilowatt hydropower unit was successfully hoisted at Baihetan Hydropower Station, the world’s largest hydropower station under construction at the junction of Ningnan county, Sichuan province and Qiaojia county, Yunnan province, marking the successful lifting of the world's first million-kilowatt hydroelectric turbine independently developed by China.
4. Chinese scientists make breakthroughs in quantum simulation
Pan Jianwei and Yuan Zhensheng from the University of Science and Technology of China proposed and experimentally implemented a new mechanism for the deep cooling of atoms. For the first time, they achieved the simultaneous preparation of 1,250 pairs of atoms with high-fidelity entangled states in the optical lattice, laying a foundation for large-scale quantum computing and simulation based on ultracold atomic optical lattice.
5. China announces name of its deep-sea manned submersible
China has named its new deep-sea manned submersible Fendouzhe, which means "striver" in Chinese. It is a major piece of deep-sea scientific and technological equipment specifically supported by the nation during the 13th Five-year Plan.
The 10,000 meter manned submersible project was launched in 2016 by scientists who previously developed the manned submersibles Jiaolong and Shenhai Yongshi. The manned submersible for 10,000 meter deep-sea exploration recently completed tank experiments in a Wuxi-based research institute under China State Shipbuilding Corporation Limited.