China makes remarkable progress in deep-sea exploration

By Liu Shiyao, Wang Pei, People’s Daily
Chinese research vessel Dayang Yihao (Ocean No.1) recently left Qingdao, Shandong Province, taking scientists on China’s 56th ocean scientific expedition.
A number of advanced equipment, such as China’s independently-developed unmanned submersible “Hailong III” and autonomous underwater vehicle “Qianlong III”  are used in the expedition, driving high the public anticipation toward the research results.
Over the past 70 years since the founding of the People’s Republic of China, the country’s strength in marine science and technology has been continuously improved. China is making a huge stride from “entering the deep sea” to “exploring and exploiting the deep-sea”, and witnessing a historical process of strengthening polar expedition capability.
China started oceanographic research in early and mid-1950s, and thanks to its intensified efforts to enhance capability building of oceanic expeditions in the recent years, the country is now able to conduct expeditions in multiple waters for multiple resources with multiple vessels.
A series of advanced research vessels, including Xiang Yang Hong 01, Da Yang Hao, and Xuelong 2 have been unveiled by China.
Jiaolong, a manned deep-sea submersible developed by China, had dived to the world’s deepest trench of 7,062 meters under the water.
The submersible family represented by Jiaolong, Hailong, and Qianlong are offering firm support for China’s deep-sea exploration, creating new “depth” of Chinese expeditions.
Besides, China has achieved splendid results in polar expeditions. In 1984, the country established its first Antarctic expedition team and built its first Antarctic research station Changcheng in the following year. Since then, the Zhongshan Station, Kunlun Station, and Taishan Station were successively set up.
Last year, the country located and laid the foundation of its fifth Antarctic research station on Inexpressible Island in Terra Nova Bay in the Ross Sea, thus bringing China’s Antarctic research into an age of three-dimensional observation which features explorations via air-land-sea means.
In addition, the country has built the scientific research station, Huanghe Station (also called Yellow River Station), in the Arctic area, and has already achieved fruitful results in its research on sea ice.
“China is at the best period to enhance its maritime strength,” said an executive of State Oceanic Administration of China’s Ministry of Natural Resources, noting that the country will unswervingly implement an innovation-driven development strategy in maritime technological development.
Efforts will be made to help China overtake traditional maritime powersand become an emerging maritime power with Chinese characteristics, said the executive.

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