News on China's scientific and technological development.

Jura

General
now I read
Construction starts on railway station in China's "city of the future"
Xinhua| 2018-12-01 21:59:56
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The construction of Xiongan railway station was started Saturday with a goal to optimize China's high-speed railway networks covering Beijing, Tianjin and Hebei Province, according to sources from the China Railway.

With a construction period of 24 months, the station is the biggest one among the five stations along the 92.4-km-long intercity railroad linking Beijing and Xiongan. The other four stations are Huangcun, new airport, Gu'an East and Bazhou North.

Upon its completion by the end of 2020, the station will be connected with the country's five high-speed railways and intercity railroads, which will allow passengers from Xiongan New Area to get to Beijing, Tianjin in half an hour and Shijiazhuang, the capital of Hebei Province, in one hour.

The project will also make Xiongan New Area a key transportation hub well connected with the central, southern, northwestern, southwestern and northeastern parts of China.

Sources with the China Railway said international bidding for the station's design and construction plans had been completed, while construction experiences involving several domestic and overseas integrated traffic hubs have been drawn upon.

A variety of intelligent design and construction technologies would be applied so that the station would be a signature upon completion, said the sources.

In a master development plan for Xiongan New Area published in late April, the Chinese government described the new region as having "national significance" following the Shenzhen Special Economic Zone and Shanghai Pudong New Area.

About 100 kilometers southwest of Beijing, Xiongan New Area, known as China's "city of the future" in Hebei Province, has been designed to become a zone for innovation, a digital city synchronized with a brick-and-mortar one, and a livable and business-friendly area.

By the middle of the century, Xiongan will become a significant part of the world-class Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei city cluster, effectively performing Beijing's non-capital functions and providing a Chinese solution to "big city malaise," according to the plan.
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AndrewS

Captain
Registered Member
I came across this graphic below from 2013 which is very interesting
Then I had a look at the latest 2010-2016 data from the OECD here
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Government R&D Spending in China
From 2010-2016, it shows that Chinese government R&D spending was stable at 0.42% of GDP
When you compare it to the G7 countries, it is definitely on the low side.
So there is scope for Chinese government R&D Spending to significantly increase from 0.42%.
The highest are SK/US/DE which are at almost 1%. The lowest are JP/UK at around 0.6%.

Business R&D Spending in China
From 2013-2016, Chinese Business R&D Spending has increased from 1.5% to 1.62% of GDP.
The highest are SK/JP which are around 2.5%. The US/DE are at around 1.8%
Chinese R&D spending is still trending upwards, so I would expect it to reach 1.8% in a few years.
China 2016 was already spending more than the USA on Business R&D, when measured using PPP.

Conclusions
China in 2016 had Business R&D Spending of 1.62%.
Only developed hi-tech countries spend anywhere near this figure.
This R&D performance is exceptional high when you compare against every other developing or middle-income country
Brazil is the next best performer at 0.5%, but this is still 3x less than China.
And the sheer volume of Chinese Business R&D spend means that its companies should be able to develop breakthroughs, handle foreign competition and also use the Chinese market to expand internationally.

----

2013 R&D SPENDING BREAKDOWN



Source
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Jura

General
it's #6 in
China's icebreaker carries out unloading operations in Antarctica
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:


Aerial photo taken on Dec. 3, 2018 shows China's research icebreaker Xuelong in Antarctica. China's research icebreaker Xuelong, also known as the Snow Dragon, is now 44 kilometers away from the Zhongshan station. Unloading operations have been carried out after the routes were determined. (Xinhua/Liu Shiping)
 

Hendrik_2000

Brigadier
Via Taishang

Chinese scientists aim for world's most detailed 3D map of human brain

Xinhua Published: 2018-12-06

Why do some brains discover the laws of universe, while others create soul-stirring music or paintings? How is memory and consciousness generated?

We can observe billions of stars and detect ripples in space, but we still barely understand our brains, which can fathom the universe.



The images showcase the incredible complexity of the human brain through an explosive fusion of art and science. [Photo: IC]

Their sophisticated structure and the number of neurons are only estimates.

Now Chinese scientists are planning to draw the clearest yet three-dimensional map of the intricate neurons and blood vessels in the human brain.

This ambitious project is like taking 3D photos of a huge forest of nearly 100 billion trees, seeing not only the whole forest, but also every twig and leaf on each tree.

"Our current methods cannot see both the trees and the forest. We aim to develop new methods to obtain a high-resolution map to see clearly how the neural network is connected," said Luo Qingming, leader of the research.

Luo, president of Hainan University and chief scientist of the Suzhou Institute for Brainsmatics of the Huazhong University of Science and Technology (HUST), in east China's Jiangsu Province, said the research will help in analyzing the mechanisms of brain diseases, and promote the development of artificial intelligence.

"The continuous changes of neural networks and brain activities pose great challenges to the analysis of brain functions. But we believe that brain functions and activities depend on the basic cells, just as a circuit network depends on its basic unit - the electronic components," said Luo.

"Different types of neurons are the basis for the analysis of brain functions and for the diagnosis and treatment of brain diseases," he said.

INNOVATIVE METHOD

Luo, 52, was born in rural Qichun County, central China's Hubei Province. At middle school, he had to study by the light of a kerosene lamp. He still has a scar on his hand from an accident of chopping firewood after school to help feed his family.

In the 1990s, Luo was a photoelectron researcher in the United States and was the first-ever person to succeed in measuring brain activity by means of near-infrared optical imaging. His technology was awarded a U.S. patent.

However, he left the high-quality research conditions abroad and returned to China to work in his alma mater, HUST, in 1997.

"I feel that I should contribute to my country," said Luo, who launched his project with a starting budget of just 200,000 yuan (about 30,000 U.S. dollars) and a lab of 25 square meters.

Brain imaging is extremely difficult, as it requires expertise in different disciplines.

"The brain is as soft as bean curd. It is difficult to fix brain samples and mark the nerves and blood vessels inside. It took us three years to solve that problem," Luo said.

"We need researchers with different academic backgrounds, such as biologists and chemists to prepare brain samples, engineers and technicians with optical, mechanical and control technology to develop the imaging instruments, and computer talents to process data and display the results."

The team took eight years to develop a brain-imaging instrument with independent intellectual property rights.

The achievement was published on the journal, Science, at the end of 2010, and was ranked as one of the top 10 scientific advances in China in 2011.

MAPPING BRAINS

"If we compare the imaging system to a camera, we first made a black-and-white camera and took black-and-white pictures of a mouse brain," Luo explained.

Since then, his team has made a series of breakthroughs to take pictures in rich colors showing amazing details of the mouse brain.

In 2016, the team received an investment of 450 million yuan to set up the Suzhou Institute for Brainsmatics, a development reported in the journal, Nature.

In the spotless lab at the institute, a mouse brain sample, wrapped in resin like a piece of amber, is sliced into layers just one micron thick.

Each layer is scanned and imaged. About 10,000 layers are sliced to get a map of the whole mouse brain.

The images of the colorful neural and vascular systems shown on the computer look like intricate highway networks. This is the world's clearest map of a mammal brain.

"We have achieved success with mice, and are making efforts to map the brains of primates which are more advanced and complicated," said Li.

"Our ultimate goal is to lead the world to get a precise map of the human brain, which will help us uncover its secrets."

TECHNICAL CHALLENGES

Scientists estimate a mouse brain has tens of millions of neurons, and a monkey brain has billions, while a human brain has about 86 billion.

"We cannot map a human brain by just adding more instruments. The huge amount of data after imaging would pose great challenges for storage and analysis," Li said.

It's estimated that the data generated from imaging a human brain would be equivalent to 200,000 movies of 4K ultra-high-definition, which would fill all the storage space of the Sunway TaihuLight, China's most powerful supercomputer.

Computing is the biggest technical bottleneck, and mapping the human brain must wait for the development of IT technology, Luo said.

Human brain scanning and imaging also faces ethical challenges. "We mark the neurons in a mouse brain with transgenic technology and virus labeling technology, which cannot be applied to a human brain," Li said.

"There are countless technical problems to overcome, but we believe that with the development of technology, these problems will be solved."

The team cooperates with labs and institutes in the United States and provides data for brain research in Europe and other countries. But Luo is looking forward to the launch of China's own brain science program.

Brain science is listed as one of the major scientific and technological projects of China's 13th five-year plan (2016-2020).

"This research could help promote children's education, and facilitate the diagnosis and treatment of brain-related diseases such as depression, Parkinson's disease and Alzheimer's disease," said Luo.

"Once we have sufficient financial support and concentrate our efforts, it will be possible to get a high-resolution map of the human brain in five to 10 years."

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Via Taishang

Chinese scientists aim for world's most detailed 3D map of human brain

Xinhua Published: 2018-12-06

Why do some brains discover the laws of universe, while others create soul-stirring music or paintings? How is memory and consciousness generated?

We can observe billions of stars and detect ripples in space, but we still barely understand our brains, which can fathom the universe.



The images showcase the incredible complexity of the human brain through an explosive fusion of art and science. [Photo: IC]

Their sophisticated structure and the number of neurons are only estimates.

Now Chinese scientists are planning to draw the clearest yet three-dimensional map of the intricate neurons and blood vessels in the human brain.

This ambitious project is like taking 3D photos of a huge forest of nearly 100 billion trees, seeing not only the whole forest, but also every twig and leaf on each tree.

"Our current methods cannot see both the trees and the forest. We aim to develop new methods to obtain a high-resolution map to see clearly how the neural network is connected," said Luo Qingming, leader of the research.

Luo, president of Hainan University and chief scientist of the Suzhou Institute for Brainsmatics of the Huazhong University of Science and Technology (HUST), in east China's Jiangsu Province, said the research will help in analyzing the mechanisms of brain diseases, and promote the development of artificial intelligence.

"The continuous changes of neural networks and brain activities pose great challenges to the analysis of brain functions. But we believe that brain functions and activities depend on the basic cells, just as a circuit network depends on its basic unit - the electronic components," said Luo.

"Different types of neurons are the basis for the analysis of brain functions and for the diagnosis and treatment of brain diseases," he said.

INNOVATIVE METHOD

Luo, 52, was born in rural Qichun County, central China's Hubei Province. At middle school, he had to study by the light of a kerosene lamp. He still has a scar on his hand from an accident of chopping firewood after school to help feed his family.

In the 1990s, Luo was a photoelectron researcher in the United States and was the first-ever person to succeed in measuring brain activity by means of near-infrared optical imaging. His technology was awarded a U.S. patent.

However, he left the high-quality research conditions abroad and returned to China to work in his alma mater, HUST, in 1997.

"I feel that I should contribute to my country," said Luo, who launched his project with a starting budget of just 200,000 yuan (about 30,000 U.S. dollars) and a lab of 25 square meters.

Brain imaging is extremely difficult, as it requires expertise in different disciplines.

"The brain is as soft as bean curd. It is difficult to fix brain samples and mark the nerves and blood vessels inside. It took us three years to solve that problem," Luo said.

"We need researchers with different academic backgrounds, such as biologists and chemists to prepare brain samples, engineers and technicians with optical, mechanical and control technology to develop the imaging instruments, and computer talents to process data and display the results."

The team took eight years to develop a brain-imaging instrument with independent intellectual property rights.

The achievement was published on the journal, Science, at the end of 2010, and was ranked as one of the top 10 scientific advances in China in 2011.

MAPPING BRAINS

"If we compare the imaging system to a camera, we first made a black-and-white camera and took black-and-white pictures of a mouse brain," Luo explained.

Since then, his team has made a series of breakthroughs to take pictures in rich colors showing amazing details of the mouse brain.

In 2016, the team received an investment of 450 million yuan to set up the Suzhou Institute for Brainsmatics, a development reported in the journal, Nature.

In the spotless lab at the institute, a mouse brain sample, wrapped in resin like a piece of amber, is sliced into layers just one micron thick.

Each layer is scanned and imaged. About 10,000 layers are sliced to get a map of the whole mouse brain.

The images of the colorful neural and vascular systems shown on the computer look like intricate highway networks. This is the world's clearest map of a mammal brain.

"We have achieved success with mice, and are making efforts to map the brains of primates which are more advanced and complicated," said Li.

"Our ultimate goal is to lead the world to get a precise map of the human brain, which will help us uncover its secrets."

TECHNICAL CHALLENGES

Scientists estimate a mouse brain has tens of millions of neurons, and a monkey brain has billions, while a human brain has about 86 billion.

"We cannot map a human brain by just adding more instruments. The huge amount of data after imaging would pose great challenges for storage and analysis," Li said.

It's estimated that the data generated from imaging a human brain would be equivalent to 200,000 movies of 4K ultra-high-definition, which would fill all the storage space of the Sunway TaihuLight, China's most powerful supercomputer.

Computing is the biggest technical bottleneck, and mapping the human brain must wait for the development of IT technology, Luo said.

Human brain scanning and imaging also faces ethical challenges. "We mark the neurons in a mouse brain with transgenic technology and virus labeling technology, which cannot be applied to a human brain," Li said.

"There are countless technical problems to overcome, but we believe that with the development of technology, these problems will be solved."

The team cooperates with labs and institutes in the United States and provides data for brain research in Europe and other countries. But Luo is looking forward to the launch of China's own brain science program.

Brain science is listed as one of the major scientific and technological projects of China's 13th five-year plan (2016-2020).

"This research could help promote children's education, and facilitate the diagnosis and treatment of brain-related diseases such as depression, Parkinson's disease and Alzheimer's disease," said Luo.

"Once we have sufficient financial support and concentrate our efforts, it will be possible to get a high-resolution map of the human brain in five to 10 years."

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Schieeettt, you scared me. With how fast Chinese science is developing I thought this article said China made an artificial brain. Scale it up and you have Brainiac from Superman LOL Next evolution of quantum computing!
 

Jura

General
now noticed the tweet
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China’s three major telecom operators have received approval for 5G spectrum, which means a national large-scale 5G test will begin. China is expected to conduct a commercial trial of 5G in 2019 and make the technology commercially available in 2020.

 

Jura

General
now I read
Xinhua Headlines: China launches Chang'e-4 probe to shed light on moon's dark side
Xinhua| 2018-12-08 13:56:56
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China's Chang'e-4 lunar probe was launched in the early hours of Saturday, and it is expected to make the first-ever soft landing on the far side of the moon.

A Long March-3B rocket, carrying the probe including a lander and a rover, blasted off from the Xichang Satellite Launch Center in southwest China's Sichuan Province at 2:23 a.m., opening a new chapter in lunar exploration.

Since the moon's revolution cycle is the same as its rotation cycle, the same side always faces the earth. The other face, most of which cannot be seen from earth, is called the far side or dark side, not because it's dark, but because most of it remains unknown.

The Chang'e-4 mission will be a key step in revealing the mysterious far side of the moon.

"The soft landing and exploration of the far side, which has never been done before, will gain first-hand information about the terrain and lunar soil components and other scientific data, which will help enrich our understanding of the moon and the universe," said Zhang He, executive director of the Chang'e-4 probe project.

The scientific tasks of the Chang'e-4 mission include low-frequency radio astronomical observation, surveying the terrain and landforms, detecting the mineral composition and shallow lunar surface structure, and measuring the neutron radiation and neutral atoms to study the environment on the far side of the moon, the China National Space Administration (CNSA) announced.

China has promoted international cooperation in its lunar exploration program, with four scientific payloads of the Chang'e-4 mission developed by scientists from the Netherlands, Germany, Sweden and Saudi Arabia.

Three scientific and technological experiments, designed by Chinese universities, will also be carried out during the mission.

DARK SIDE

Nobody had ever seen the far side of the moon before the Soviet Union launched the Luna 3 probe in 1959, which was the first-ever mission to photograph the far side.

The United States Apollo 8 mission sent three astronauts to fly around the moon in 1968, the first time that people saw the moon's far side with their own eyes.

Remote-sensing images show the far side is thickly dotted with impact craters and has much fewer lunar mares than the near side. Scientists infer that the lunar crust on the far side is much thicker than the near side. But why so is still a mystery.

"As no astronauts or rovers have ever landed on the far side, we know little about it except for speculation based on remote-sensing images," Zhang said.

Astronomers are also seeking a completely quiet electromagnetic environment to detect the weak signals emitted from remote celestial bodies in deep space.

The far side is such a place, as the body of the moon shields against radio interference from the earth. From there, astronomers can study the origins and evolution of stars and galaxies, peering into the dawn of the universe.

The low-frequency radio astronomical observation will be one of the major scientific goals of the Chang'e-4 mission, said Zhang.

CHALLENGES

Scientists hope to land the probe in an area with many geological features such as the transition zone between highlands and basins to get more scientific information.

But engineers worry about the safety of the landing and the rover, and are searching for relatively flat areas.

After careful analysis, the experts chose the Von Karman Crater, named after a Hungarian-American mathematician, aerospace engineer and physicist, in the Aitken Basin, as the landing site.

The region is believed to have great research potential, and is at a similar latitude to the landing site of Chang'e-3. The sunlight there can ensure the probe's energy supply.

However, the chosen landing area for Chang'e-4, which is a smaller crater within a larger crater, is much narrower than the landing site of Chang'e-3, and the terrain is more rugged, posing great challenges for the landing, said Wu Xueying, deputy chief designer of the probe.

"So the landing accuracy of Chang'e-4 must be higher than Chang'e-3," Wu said.

In addition, landing and roving on the far side of the moon requires a relay satellite to transmit signals.

China launched the relay satellite "Queqiao", meaning Magpie Bridge, on May 21 to set up the communication link between the earth and the moon's far side.

The satellite has successfully entered a halo orbit around the second Lagrangian (L2) point of the earth-moon system, about 455,000 km from the earth. It is the world's first communication satellite operating in that orbit, said Zhang Lihua, chief designer of the satellite from the China Academy of Space Technology.

In orbit, the relay satellite can "see" both the earth and the far side of the moon. The earth's and moon's gravity balances the orbital motion of the satellite and makes it very fuel-efficient.

A test on the satellite in November showed that it is in good condition, said Zhang.

VISITORS FROM CHINA

Named after Chinese moon goddess "Chang'e", China's lunar exploration program, which began in 2004, includes orbiting and landing on the moon, and bringing samples back to earth.

The country's first lunar probe, Chang'e-1, was launched in 2007, making China the fifth country to develop and launch a lunar probe on its own.

Chang'e-2, launched in 2010, created a full lunar map with a resolution of 7 meters, as well as images of the Sinus Iridum, or the Bay of Rainbows, with a resolution of 1.5 meters, showing the details of the proposed landing site of Chang'e-3.

After accomplishing its tasks, Chang'e-2 flew to the L2 point of the sun-earth system about 1.5 million km from earth to conduct scientific experiments. It was then tasked to fly by and observe the Toutatis asteroid, about 7 million km from the earth, and continued its journey into deep space.

Chang'e-3, launched in 2013, was the first Chinese spacecraft to soft-land on and explore an extraterrestrial object. The scientific instruments on its lander are still operating, making Chang'e-3 the longest working man-made probe on the moon.

China launched an experimental spacecraft in 2014 to test technologies to be used on Chang'e-5, which is expected to bring moon samples back to earth. The spacecraft re-entered the earth's atmosphere at a speed of about 11.2 km per second.

The lunar program ushered in a new era for China to explore the universe and peaceful utilization of space.
 

Tam

Captain
Registered Member
Huawei has been getting bad news lately but this one blew away my mind. The Huawei Mate 20 Pro creamed a blind test on socila media for picture quality over the likes of the Google Pixel 3 and the Apple IPhone XS. The votes for the blind test amounts to millions, and in the end, there is only one winner.


I didn't expect the one who got second place --- another Chinese phone, Xiaomi's Pocophone F1.

I should add that the Huawei Mate 20 Pro costs over a thousand, but the Poco F1 only costs $300.
 
Last edited:

N00813

Junior Member
Registered Member
I didn't expect the one who got second place --- another Chinese phone, Xiaomi's Pocophone F1.
I should add that the Huawei Mate 20 Pro costs over a thousand, but the Poco F1 only costs $300.
TBH that is surprising. In various reviews, Xiaomi uses a cheaper camera in order to get the phone cost down so that they can still make a small profit, even at low retail prices -- maybe the "brand filter" for camera image quality is a lot stronger than we think!
 
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