A review of major Chinese scientific and technological breakthroughs in 2019

China made remarkable achievements in science and technology in 2019, ranging from virtual cyberspace to real life, and from the ocean to space.

China’s largest carrier rocket Long March-5 makes new flight

(Photo/Xinhua)

China launched the third Long March-5, its largest carrier rocket, from Wenchang Space Launch Center in south China’s Hainan Province on Dec. 27.

The rocket, codenamed Long March-5 Y3, carried the Shijian-20 technological experiment satellite weighing over 8 tons, the heaviest and most advanced communications satellite in the country, into its planned orbit.

Huawei launches world’s first flagship 5G Soc chipset

Huawei’s chipset subsidiary HiSilicon said in May that it will use backup chips it has independently developed for years to cope with the ban from the US.

Since then, Huawei has continued marching forward on the road of innovation. On Sept. 6, it even unveiled the world’s first flagship 5G system-on-chip (Soc) chipset, namely the Kirin 990 5G.

Data from the company suggests that its sales revenue exceeded 610 billion yuan in the first three quarters of 2019, a year-on-year increase of 24.5 percent, which signified the resilience and momentum of the company in the face of challenges.

China grants 5G licenses for commercial use

China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology granted 5G licenses for commercial use on June 6, marking the beginning of a new era in the country’s telecommunications industry.

China Telecom, China Mobile, China Unicom and China Broadcasting Network are the first batch of companies to obtain the licenses.

Blockchain technology gathers momentum

Blockchain technology, a decentralized, distributed ledger that records the provenance of a digital asset, is believed to bring major reforms to various industries as it has done to the Internet. It has even been incorporated into the national strategy in 2019.

In the first half of 2019, China announced a total of 3,547 patents on blockchain technologies, much more than in the whole year of 2018, according to the CCID Academy for Industry and Information Technology. Meanwhile, Chinese patents on blockchain account for over half of the world’s total, said the China Academy of Information and Communications Technology.

China’s first domestically built aircraft carrier delivered

China’s first domestically built aircraft carrier, the Shandong, was delivered to the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) Navy and placed in active service on Dec. 17 at a naval port in Sanya, south China’s Hainan Province.

Approved by the Central Military Commission of China, the Shandong was given the hull number 17.

Xuelong 2 makes its debut in Antarctic expedition

(Photo/Xinhua)

Xuelong 2, China’s polar icebreaker, made its maiden voyage in the country’s 36th Antarctic expedition in October.

While breaking ice in the waters in Antarctica, Xuelong 2 led the other icebreaker Xuelong toward the designated unloading area near the Zhongshan Station in Antarctica.

Beijing’s new airport begins operation

(Photo/Xinhua)

Beijing’s brand new Daxing International Airport, located 46 km south of downtown Beijing, opened to flights on Sept. 25.

Shaped like a phoenix spreading its wings, the new aviation hub allows a passenger to walk from the center of the terminal building to the furthest departure gate within eight minutes.

Its passenger throughput is expected to reach 100 million by 2040, with 800,000 takeoffs and landings.