“How will you feel when Chinese taikonauts are walking around on the moon? Is this just one more example of the United States ceding its technological superiority? How you feel might depend on what happens to the U.S. space program over the next decade,” writes Dr. Kenneth Hicks, Professor of Physics and Astronomy, in the Sept. 22 Columbus Dispatch article ‘Get ready for ‘taikonauts’ landing on the moon.”
We have astronauts, the Russians have cosmonauts, and now the Chinese have taikonauts.
Three taikonauts spent 15 days in orbit this summer (their fifth in a series of manned space missions), and that’s just the start of China’s space program.
China recently announced that it will soft-land a lunar rover by the end of the year. This will make China only the third country to softly land a spacecraft on the moon….
One of China’s goals is to land a person on the moon by 2020.
NASA has abandoned its plans to go back to the moon in the foreseeable future. Instead, NASA hopes to land a human on Mars or an asteroid.
Why is NASA not responding to the challenge from China to go to the moon? I think the current administration lacks the will to meet this challenge. The American public seems less excited about establishing a moon base and more interested in a manned mission to Mars.