Does China Do The Right Things?

Long March 7 launched successfully (https://youtu.be/rQ9mxTyPYfE), the first Chinese rocket running on kerosene. Kerosene rockets tend to have much higher thrusts than cryogenic rockets because carbon dioxide is a lot heavier than water steam. Also, due to lower temperature at the nozzles, kerosene rockets are readily reusable. So, China does have plans for reusable rockets in future following this successful launch. How about solid fuel rockets that take unit thrust to a whole new level (http://qz.com/721180/watch-the-massive-rocket-blast-that-will-send-humans-to-mars/)? Well, China is not planning to go to Mars yet. Solid fuel rockets are rather easy to make, but recycling them is not an easy task, well, at least not easy yet for China. However, with their new launch site on Hainan Island, they should be able to drop those used solid fuel rockets in the South China Sea on parachutes. Otherwise, they will have to wait until they have the complete rocket recycling technology, which they can apply to all their reusable rockets. Solid fuel rockets are a lot more expensive, so unless China has the need for super high thrust, I am not seeing when they are going to use them for space exploration. For now, solid fuel rockets remain in the domain of missile engines in China. However, I believe that China should still at least try everything once, if they have the money, just to accumulate their national technology base.

China is also building the largest navy in the world. By 2030, they want to complete 4 carriers, 99 submarines, 102 destroyers and cruisers, 26 frigates, 73 amphibious assault ships and 111 missile corvettes, a total of 415 units (https://youtu.be/mThfwlGFvkI). However, this is unit count and not total tonnage. In terms of total tonnage, China will still be far behind US in 2030. China’s focus will be on the defense of nearby waters, such as the East China Sea and the South China Sea, because as we all know, global presence requires tonnage, but that’s not the focus of China now. Although it is important to mass produce using the existing technology base, it is also as important to research new ways of naval warfare to counter the global strategy of US. For example, US Navy is completely nuclearized, but both Russia and China do not have a nuclearized navy. True, nuclearized warships tend to be much larger and heavier, hence more attractive to anti-ship missiles, but they have unlimited range, food supply being the only limitation. Two technologies will be game changers in naval warfare: complete automation and nuclear reactor miniaturization. While everyone is trying to automate aircraft and tanks, no one is trying to automate warships yet. With the advancement of artificial intelligence and telecommunication technologies, unmanned miniaturized nuclear warships and submarines will rewrite the way nuclear warfare and naval warfare are fought. China is too shortsighted. If Russia can use money as their excuse, China can only use stupidity as their excuse. Both artificial intelligence and telecommunication technologies have very high commercial value. You make lots of money while building the most powerful army in the world. Why not? You always have to think ahead of your competitor to remain in an advantageous position.

China is developing a new strategic stealth bomber for both naval warfare and nuclear warfare, again an idea of US. It just feels like China always trying to catching up to US from behind but never really making it. Can China please have their own fresh new ideas and military strategies? Innovation is key to global leadership. Again, you always have to think ahead of your competitor to remain in an advantageous position and to be a true leader, a point that both US and Russia know very well. Is China ready to be a leader of tomorrow, given the amount of the resources it owns and controls, human, financial and physical? That’s the question.

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About Run Song

Run Song (宋闰) is my pen name for the Moments of Poetry, a collection of poems about the greatest moments of life. If photography captures the greatest moments of life, poetry is the life behind them.
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