How time flies, the year of 2015 is coming to an end and the promising year 2016 is approaching. At this turn of year, I wish to extend my best wishes to all staffs of the National Space Science Center (NSSC), colleagues dedicating themselves to the CAS Strategic Priority Program (SPP) on Space Science and to all our international collaborators. May you have a happy life and good health in the coming New Year.
The past year is exceptional. During this year, the National Space Science Center has officially changed its name from CSSAR (Center for Space Science Applied Research) to NSSC, which means that our goal to spearhead the cause of Chinese space science was officially approved by the government.
During this year, China and Europe decided to send a big “SMILE” into space. The new space science program called the Solar wind Magnetosphere Ionosphere Link Explorer (SMILE), is scheduled to launch in 2021, standing out among 13 candidates in the CAS-ESA Joint Scientific Space Mission selection process. It will become yet another satellite program illustrating the seamless cooperation between CAS and ESA after the CLUSTER-Double Star Program.
During this year, we also witnessed the launching of China’s first space-based dark-matter detector, the Dark Matter Particle Explorer (DAMPE), nicknamed Wu-kong (or Monkey King), marking the start of a new direction in the China’s space strategy. A week later, we are very pleased to know that DAMPE has successfully sent home its first set of scientific data. Now it is in good work condition in space and even better than we anticipated in the first place.
In 2015, we are gratified to realize the International Space Science Institute-Beijing (ISSI-BJ) has opened a window for the outside world to see more about China’s space science programs, and for Chinese scientists to see scientific world outside.
None of this happened out of thin air. It’s because we put in place a long-term space science plan with clear values in its heart. Looking into the future of 2016, we still have a lot to accomplish. At Wu-kong’s heels, we will face many challenging space science programs, such as the ShiJian-10 mission, the Quantum Experiments at Space Scale (QUESS), the Hard X-ray Modulation Telescope (HXMT), coupled with the Satellite to Monitor the Global Distribution of CO2 (TanSat).
By 2016, our new campus in Huairou will be ready for use. The first-phase relocation work will be initiated as the New Year begins, and hopefully will be finished by September. This is of vital importance for sustainable development of NSSC. I sincerely hope that all staff members can adopt themselves to the new working environment and make joint effort to build a rosy prospect for the center.
Having obtained substantial support from international partners, we welcome more valuable suggestions and comments from global space community, also welcome colleagues worldwide in space science to be further involved in our missions. We believe, cooperation and win-win will play an essential role in 2016. At last, I would like to extend our heartfelt thanks to the international friends for their kind cooperation.
Director General WU Ji
31st December 2015
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