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N0.468

CHINA  SCIENCE  AND  TECHNOLOGY
NEWSLETTER
The Ministry of Science and Technology
People's Republic of China

 

N0.468

March 10,2007

 

 

 

 

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IN THIS ISSUE


 

* More Digital Contents

*China-France Pharmaceutical Collaboration

* Key Aerogeophysical Survey Launched

* Mysteries of Cerebral Reperfusion Injury Unveiled

* China Leads 4th Generation Nuclear Reactor

* Robotized Bird


 

 

  SPECIAL ISSUE

 

More Digital Contents

China¡¯s Culture Industry in 2007, a blue book jointly compiled by the Culture Research Center, part of the Chinese Academy of Social Science, and the Cultural Industry Innovation and R&D Center affiliated to Shanghai Jiaotong University, says the spread of digital media has encouraged the application of digital contents. The blue book adds that China¡¯s radio and TV broadcasting industry is developing in the direction of added value service brought up by digitization, after establishing a nationwide coverage. Statistics for the first half of 2006 show that there are 130 million household subscribers to cable TV programs, with digital cable subscribers amounting to 6.5 million in number.

According to the statistics published by the Ministry of Information Industry, during the 10th Five-year period (2001-2005), China had an annual addition of some 100 million fixed telephone subscribers, with a fixed telephone possession of 27 sets per hundred persons, and mobile phone possession 30.3 sets per hundred persons. At present, some 400 million households have possessed TV sets, and 800 million households telephones, formed a terminal community made up of diverse consumer groups.

In assessing the situation, the blue book points out that China¡¯s radio and TV broadcasting industry enjoys the strength of broadband and contents, while the telecommunication industry has the strength of market competition. The two, working together, may lead to the birth of an industry for digital contents.

Some other statistics show that as of June 30, 2006, China had a broadband population of 77 million people, or 2/3 of the netizen in the country. The number of computers connecting to broadband has also risen to 28.15 million sets, or half of the computers connecting to network. These figures show that China is entering an era of broadband connection. An online survey made by the China Internet Network Information Center shows that as of June 30, 2006, some 15 million people had a frequent access to online education websites, 25 million people looked for jobs from online resources, 3 million people would make shopping through online vendors, and 28 million people often visited blogs.

The blue book also believes that network technology is producing the contents and consuming patterns that fit its development.

 

INTERNATIONAL COOPERATION

 

China-France Pharmaceutical Collaboration

JIN Xiaoming, MOST Director of International Cooperation held talks on March 2, 2007 with Gilles Henri Garault, cabinet councilor of French Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Francois Guinot, President of French Academy of Technology, and Servier, Pierre Fabre, and Ethypharm, representatives from three French pharmaceutical companies, discussing collaborations between the two countries in the area of pharmacy.

During the meeting, the Chinese side briefed the French side of a range of initiatives launched by MOST in the area, including an international cooperation program for traditional Chinese medicine (Program) staged in July 2006, a launch event to be held June 27-28 2007 in Rome to recommend the project of the international cooperation in traditional Chinese medicine to Europe, and an international conference on traditional Chinese medicine to be held in the late November 2007. The Chinese side invited its French counterpart to send a senior delegation to attend the above-mentioned events, hoping France will become one of the founders for the international cooperation program of traditional Chinese medicine at the Conference to be held on November in Beijing. MOST said it has thought highly of an accord signed between Chinese and French government on bilateral cooperation in the area of traditional Chinese medicine, and will promote the collaborations under the said framework.

The French side applauded the Program initiated by the Chinese side, and expressed interest to be part of the implementation. It also accepted the invitation for sending a French delegation to be present at the two upcoming events organized by MOST. The French side expressed its appreciations to the strong support provided by MOST in implementing the accord between Chinese and French government on bilateral cooperation in the area of traditional Chinese medicine, stressing that the joint R&D of new drugs by Chinese and French pharmaceutical companies will be the priorities for the bilateral collaboration. At the meeting, representatives from French pharmaceutical companies showed their intentions of cooperation in the area of traditional Chinese medicine R&D, registration of traditional Chinese medicine in Europe, and training. The Chinese side aired a positive response to the proposal, and promised further talks for detailed action.

 

RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT

 

Key Aerogeophysical Survey Launched

With a budget of RMB 270 million, a key project of aerogeophysical survey, jointly initiated by the Chinese Ministry of Science and Technology and Ministry of Land and Resources during the 11th Five-year plan period (2006-2010), will produce an advanced and practical technical system for aerogeophysical surveys, in an attempt to meet the needs for fast and high resolution technologies and equipment desired by mineral resources prospecting. The effort will eventually raise China¡¯s innovative capacity in resources survey, mineral resources prospecting, and survey equipment making. The project, made up of eight research components, will be jointly implemented by the research institutes affiliated to Ministry of Land and Resources, Ministry of Education, and Sichuan provincial government. It is planned to develop five proprietary technical systems and equipment, for aeromagnetism, aeroelectromagnetism, and gamma-ray spectrometer surveys. Invention patents and high caliber R&D personnel are also expected from the project.

 

The project, officially launched on March 2, 2007, has set its goals to enhance the resolution, stability, and probe depth of China¡¯s aerogeophysical survey system, in a move to realize a fast, efficient, multi-sized, and in-depth 3-D probe, allowing China to match its survey technologies with an internationally advanced level. The effort is also important, both practically and strategically, for ensuring a sustainable development of China¡¯s energy, mineral resources, and economy.

 

Mysteries of Cerebral Reperfusion Injury Unveiled

 

Not long ago, Prof. QI Sihua, chief anesthesiologist at No. 4 Hospital affiliated to the Harbin Medical School, has unveiled the mysteries behind cerebral ischmia-reperfusion injury at the morphological, protein, and genetic levels. He has also sorted out the protection mechanisms of a number of venous anesthetic drugs on brain.   

QI found that a number of clinical events, such as shock, multiple organ failure, and cerebrovascular stenosis or blocking along with a low blood pressure, may cause cerebral ischemia. Cerebral ischemia patients, more often than not, may suffer a reperfusion injury after coming back. Almost all the patients having reperfusion injury would have obstacles in language, perception, movement, intelligence, and memory. In serious cases, patients may become a vegetarian man or die. In this context, strengthening the pre-operation protection of brain makes sense for anesthesiologists. So far a number of anesthetic drugs have gained clinical approval for their brain and heart protection functionalities. The exact mechanism of protection, however, is still unknown.

Results of animal experiments show that cell apoptosis makes an important approach through which neurons die after reperfusion. Prof. QI believes that understanding the death roadmap of cell apoptosis is the key to blocking a link in the loop, so as to avoid apoptosis. He found through rat experiments that four anesthetic drugs, including Ketamin, thiopental sodium, Midazolam, and Disoprofol, can inhibit the occurrence of neuron apoptosis after cerebral ischmia-reperfusion injury. It has a mechanism closely associated with anesthetic drugs¡¯ interference in the release and expression of apoptosis regulating factors. In addition, different venous anesthetic drugs have a differed mechanism for protecting brain, depending on the dosage and duration.

The finding has found the root cause of cerebral ischmia-reperfusion injury, and provided a theoretical basis and objective evidences for administering anesthetic drugs in a safe and effective manner. It helps to ease the suffering of patients and prevent them becoming a vegetarian man. The study team headed by Prof. QI has published 9 papers in domestic or international journals, with 5 of them collected by SCI. 

China Leads 4th Generation Nuclear Reactor

A team of scientists who have rolled out a 10-megawatt high temperature gas-cooled reactor was honored with first-place prize for the National S&T Progress Award, at a conferring ceremony held on February 27, 2007. The construction of the reactor has made China a leader of 4th generation nuclear reactor, possessing proprietary core technologies for designing and assembling a pebble bed modular reactor.

According to a briefing, the development of 10-megawatt high temperature gas-cooled reactor has produced six innovative results: the world first pebble bed modular reactor with built-in safety mechanism; safety test made on the reactor under the scenario of a serious accident, the first of its kind in the world; a production line for pebble fuel components; internationally advanced techniques for coated fuel particle making; pulse pneumatic pebble remover, key technologies for pebble bed making, and continuous fuel element feeding; successful running of the full digital protecting system, the first of its kind in the country; and proprietary main helium circulator.

Considering the promising perspective of the reactor, China Huaneng Group, China Nuclear Engineering and Construction Corporation, and Tsinghua University will jointly carve out a pebble bed modular reactor with a capacity of 200,000 kilowatts for demonstration purpose. The demonstration reactor will be located in Rongcheng, a  county-level city in Shandong. 

Robotized Bird

A natural pigeon, carrying a head band containing a signal generator, can complete a range of tasks assigned by computer, including taking off, circling, flying surrounding the lab, and landing.

The bird, able to fly either in right or in left according to man¡¯s instruction, is a robotized bird developed by the Robot Research Center, part of Shandong Science and Technology University, under a research component assigned by the National Natural Science Foundation to develop robotized animals.

The socalled robotized animal is a technology to turn an animal into a robot, manipulating animals¡¯ nervous system using artificial signals. Prof. SU Xuecheng, chief of the project, told reporters that they used coded signals to stimulate certain nerve sites in the pigeon, making the pigeon that is standing on the ground, or perching in the tree to take off, or directing a flying pigeon to head for different directions, or circle in the air. The technology makes the pigeon taking off from a given point, and reaching a designated area along a pre-set route possible. 

New Progresses for Direct Coal Liquefaction

With the support of the National 863 Program, two projects, undertaken by China Coal Research Institute to develop highly dispersed iron catalysts for different coals, and efficient engineering catalyst reactions for direct coal liquefaction, have achieved laudable progresses.

Based on the findings achieved in the 10th Five-year period, the research team has adapted the catalysts to the coals desirable for direct liquefaction, including brown coal, dry burning coal, and gas coal. It rolled out a mixed liquefaction technique that takes advantage of the concerted strength of different coal types, and increases the oil recovery by 4%£­5%, compared with a single type based liquefaction.

Meanwhile, the team has amplified the oxidation reactor, a key facility for preparing the catalysts. Data from repeated experiments show that the special components developed by the team enjoy numerous merits, including high mass transfer efficiency, solid sediment resistance, and easy engineering amplification. The effort has found solutions to addressing the amplification issues involving the key equipment applied in the direct coal liquefaction, and created a bright perspective for catalyst adaptation and subsequent commercial applications.

Series Hybrid Bus in Operation

HFF6110GZ-3, a series hybrid bus jointly developed by Anhui Ankai Auto and Shidai Huatong Electric Motor, was put into commercial operation on January 2007 at Bus line 92B in Shanghai. The hybrid bus has been so far running smoothly.

The new bus is equipped with a series synergy drive system independently developed by Shidai Huatong. The system is made up of a range of proprietary components or technologies, including APU control, regenerating brake, fuel cell match, special reducer, generator, optimized match between engine and drive motor, and integrated bus control technology.

Statistics published by Shanghai People¡¯s Bus Corp show that as of the end of February 2007, the hybrid bus has been running 6,500 km without major failures, with an attendance rate of 95%. Presenting no failures that affect the normal operation of the bus, or call for in-house maintenance, the hybrid bus has produced a gas mileage of 33-34 liters, with a fuel saving of 20%, compared with the regular bus running on the same route. In the meantime, the hybrid has exhibited an apparent improvement in cutting down hazardous tail emissions by 60%, through an optimized engine operation in line with the national standard III for auto exhaust. The bus company thought highly of the hybrid, for its numerous merits, including rationally configured drive system, improved safety and reliability, a noticeably reduced fuel consumption, lower noise, comfortable ride, auto shift gear, and simple operation.

 

 

 NEWS BRIEF

 

China Establish Biosecurity Center

The State Development and Reform Commission announced on February 25, 2007 that it will invest RMB 142 million to establish a national center for agrobiological safety, in a move to address the safety issues in the area, including invasion of hazardous insects, and the impacts of genetic modification on agrobiological safety. The new center will be made up of an array of labs and facilities, studying high risky plant pathogen, insects, and plants, and providing agrobiological safety information analysis and earlier warning. The new center will be mainly built by the Plant Protection Institute, part of the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences, and is scheduled to open in 2009.

Officials at the Plant Protection Institute told reporters that the new center will create a public platform for sharing the experience and information on agrobiological safety. It will test suspect specimens collected from different parts of the country on a regular basis, in an effort to expose possible dangers. The insulated environment will allow the Center to prevent the specimens, more often than not, live specimens from spreading into natural environment. The center will share its data with agricultural scientists.

 


       Comments or inquiries on editorial matters or Newsletter content should be directed to:

Mr. Mao Zhongying, Department of International Cooperation, MOST 15B, Fuxing Road Beijing 100862, PR China  Tel: (8610)58881360 Fax: (8610) 58881364

http://www.most.gov.cn