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#1 2004-07-05 11:46:42

Rxke
Member
From: Belgium
Registered: 2003-11-03
Posts: 3,667

Re: Chinese interested in Bigelow's inflatables - Alt.SpaceStation in the making?

http://www.aviationnow.com/avnow/news/c … l]Aviation Now

Bigelow is currently planning to do two sub-scale testlaunches in 2005-6 of his 'Nautilius' inflatable structure.

After initial tests, another batch of test will be carried out with the life-suppport systems, and then ... If all goes well... He might launch the 'real thing' with Chinese hardware(!)

etc etc...

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#2 2004-07-05 14:30:57

flashgordon
Member
Registered: 2003-01-21
Posts: 314

Re: Chinese interested in Bigelow's inflatables - Alt.SpaceStation in the making?

as I was going to say, i couldn't wait for them to team up with some x-prizers; but! the article mentions that they will be!

The only bummer is molecular manufacturing is coming and that will make for a global backlash towards science and technology including spaceflight because spaceflight would be viewed as a way out for science/techies to go unregulated; this will happen probably before private space interests actually get mankind off this admittedly beautifull rock.

Just imagine though! These bigalow inflatables with spike rocket engines getting scramjets to work to get the inflatable space stations up; then they'd be powered by the new solar energy collectors that take in all wavelength of solar energy, and they could even do the magnetic solar sailing, and mankind would finally be free of earth!

But, it will be all too late and for not . . . as Peter green said it, "Oh well . . . ."

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#3 2004-07-06 08:59:37

dicktice
Member
From: Nova Scotia, Canada
Registered: 2002-11-01
Posts: 1,764

Re: Chinese interested in Bigelow's inflatables - Alt.SpaceStation in the making?

I don't see how "they" can mention Science and Regulation in the same breath. Inflatable habitats in space, once conceived and demonstrated however primitively, are bound to make living in microgravity the joy we would wish it to be.

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#4 2004-07-13 11:35:18

cDelta
Member
From: New Jersey
Registered: 2004-07-01
Posts: 46

Re: Chinese interested in Bigelow's inflatables - Alt.SpaceStation in the making?

Here's an article that came out July 13. It details the US Government's concerns over the possible Bigelow-China business partnership.

http://www.newsmax.com/archives/article … 0306.shtml

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#5 2004-07-13 11:57:29

GCNRevenger
Member
From: Earth
Registered: 2003-10-14
Posts: 6,056

Re: Chinese interested in Bigelow's inflatables - Alt.SpaceStation in the making?

Well, that sounds like that... Bigelow ought to go back to talking with Elon Musk.

Congressmen: "Will it help Communist China build a space station?"

Big: "Yes"

Congreemen: "Then you can't do that." *thump of the big red "REJECTED" rubber stamp*


"The power of accurate observation is often called cynicism by those that do not have it." - George Bernard Shaw

The glass is at 50% of capacity

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#6 2004-07-13 12:01:23

cDelta
Member
From: New Jersey
Registered: 2004-07-01
Posts: 46

Re: Chinese interested in Bigelow's inflatables - Alt.SpaceStation in the making?

Personally, I found it quite amusing how they emphasized communist before China.

... In Communist China, inflatable space station buys you ...  smile

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#7 2004-07-13 12:05:52

GCNRevenger
Member
From: Earth
Registered: 2003-10-14
Posts: 6,056

Re: Chinese interested in Bigelow's inflatables - Alt.SpaceStation in the making?

Well it is true. China is still for intents and purposes run by Communists, who still aren't too fond of this "free speech" business and still swear that they will eventually rule Taiwan again, by force if nessesarry. And then there are the countries on the border, like Nepal I believe, and the general Chinese hostility (particularly sales of Chinese weapons to whoever will pay) when we aren't talking trade or North Korea.


"The power of accurate observation is often called cynicism by those that do not have it." - George Bernard Shaw

The glass is at 50% of capacity

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#8 2004-07-13 12:21:11

clark
Member
Registered: 2001-09-20
Posts: 6,348

Re: Chinese interested in Bigelow's inflatables - Alt.SpaceStation in the making?

Congressmen: "Will it help create jobs in my district?"

Big: "Yes"

Congreemen: "Then you can do it." *thump of the big green "APPROVED" rubber stamp*

Here is what is being said... if you read between the hyperbole and the partisan editorial crap:

Chinese officals have talked with Bigelow about launching the Nautilis on Long March rockets. Chinese officals have talked with Bigelow about their Chinese Soyuz servicing the Nautilis (or Bigelow has talked to them about both).

What does that tell you?

One eyed man says: Bigelow is intent on opening up the worlds first orbital hotel/research center. He has all of the technology to create the hotel, but the smart kids in the class will realize that his master plan has a hole in it...

If you have an orbiting hotel designed for people, what do you need to make sure people can use it?

Chinese officals who are thinking of "commercializing" space?
Russians with a desire to sell seats on their Soyuz?
ESA and Russian's developing a larger version of the Soyuz to accomadate more passangers (when there isn't any room on the ISS)?
the begining of a sub/orbital space industry (geared towards human cargo) in the US?

Bigelow won't be ready with his space hotel for at least another 5-8 years... the first version of the CEV will be ready, and guess what, multiple business's are vying for the contract with a "fly-off". That means a (several) loser is going to have a workable orbital vehicle that can fly on Falcon's, Delta's, and Atlas rockets.

:;):

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#9 2004-07-13 13:04:01

GCNRevenger
Member
From: Earth
Registered: 2003-10-14
Posts: 6,056

Re: Chinese interested in Bigelow's inflatables - Alt.SpaceStation in the making?

But it won't make very many jobs in the US if the station is assembled, launched, and tended by Chinese and Russian governments... you seem to forget that Soyuz, Klipper, and Shenzhou are not private entities. The Chinese space program, infact, is wholey controlled by the military. The CEV, under Nasa's control, probobly won't be going to a private space station anyway, since there is aproximatly zero science to do in space thats worth the money (see ISS).

And as established in other threads, the demand for the super-high-end space tourism is dubious considering its cost and the supply of adventerous millionaires, which means nothing of scale will get built even if the project does go forward.

And do you think China will just kinda take the prepacked payload faring with the TransHab module with the "please don't open and steal our technology or use for military purposes - US St. Dept" tape over the seams and put that on top of a Long March HLV?


"The power of accurate observation is often called cynicism by those that do not have it." - George Bernard Shaw

The glass is at 50% of capacity

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#10 2004-07-13 13:12:26

Euler
Member
From: Corvallis, OR
Registered: 2003-02-06
Posts: 922

Re: Chinese interested in Bigelow's inflatables - Alt.SpaceStation in the making?

What military purpose could it possibly serve?  If they just want to spy on us, unmanned spy satellites are a lot more efficient.

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#11 2004-07-13 13:20:19

clark
Member
Registered: 2001-09-20
Posts: 6,348

Re: Chinese interested in Bigelow's inflatables - Alt.SpaceStation in the making?

But it won't make very many jobs in the US if the station is assembled, launched, and tended by Chinese and Russian governments...

It would make more than if it were never built at all. It creates revenue by having American production of the units. Bigelow is looking for a ride, not for production. What you have is one account of the Chinese meeting Bigelow- do you know the actual contents of the discussion?

So let's take a step back and realize what we do know: Bigelow is a nut willing to sink half his fortune and several years of his life in a completely private venture to create affordable housing in space. I am not making this up.

This is his stated goals that are apparent- no guessing to intentions. The rich nutjob wants to do it, is working towards it, and no matter what you think of his prospects, he is launching two prototypes in the next 18 months to build towards the eventual production and deployment of a 40-50 ton version of a transhab vehicle.

Now, the guy may be crazy, but he isn't completely stupid. He knows that there is a secondary element to all of this. Why you continue to ignore it is beyond me, you're smarter than that. He has to have a way to get people to a waiting orbital hotel/research center. That is Phase 2, and it has to happen at the same time the first Genesis goes up.

There are several options- he can wait on deployment until an actual orbital delivery system for customers is available (less likely because he is hell bent on making this happen yesterday).
Work with promising canadites for orbital delivery to develop a solution by the time he is ready with his hotel (likely, he is working with many in the field)
Talk with exsisting orbital delivery providers- NASA, China, and Russia. The only exsisting orbital delivery systems come from them. And Russia is willing to sell seats, and China just may decide to do it and gain more prestige and technical know-how.

Again, Bigelow won't be ready for another 5-8 years, by then NASA will be a different beast. Our space industry will hopefully be a different beast.

And as established in other threads, the demand for the super-high-end space tourism is dubious considering its cost and the supply of adventerous millionaires, which means nothing of scale will get built even if the project does go forward.

"As established in other threads..." Why, because you and a few others think so much of yourself on the matter? There are a lot of people who think contrary to everything you think is wrong with this or that, and they are making it happen. You have only yourself to blame for not seeing it.

And do you think China will just kinda take the prepacked payload faring with the TransHab module with the "please don't open and steal our technology or use for military purposes - US St. Dept" tape over the seams and put that on top of a Long March HLV?

Perhaps not. It can go on a Russian rocket, or a new version of some falcon. Bigelow has a few years yet.

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#12 2004-07-13 14:30:02

GCNRevenger
Member
From: Earth
Registered: 2003-10-14
Posts: 6,056

Re: Chinese interested in Bigelow's inflatables - Alt.SpaceStation in the making?

And a few jobs of the people already working for Bigelow - no new, additional jobs at all - is supposed to make Congress so mad with lust for Bigelow's money that they will all collectivly overlook the risk of giving technology to China for a chance at the piece of the small time action?

Making what happen? So far, private and profitable small-time/gov't-free spaceflight is still a pipe dream, even post-SS1, nobody can come up with a really convincing business case. And yes, I am asserting that the economics of space tourism, particularly orbital tourism which will be limited to the super-rich alone, is a questionable proposition in light of the earlier threads. How many people, how often, for how much per ticket and how much for launch? Paying off a 100's of millions for development bill replacing sounding rockets or universit payloads? Specialty hypersonic air freight? I have heard no convincing response from you or anyone else Clark that it will make a profit... show us the money as the saying goes.

Neither Russian nor Chinese manned/supply vehicles can possibly be launched for less than around $30-40M, it just isn't going to happen... Elon Musk's little Falcon-V even if it is built will still be too small for manned flight... provided he can even launch his dinky little one-ton toy.

In fact, I wouldn't put it beyond Congress to axe the madman Bigelow's Chinese relations just to keep China from getting brownie prestige points, since things aren't looking good for Nasa.

PS: Oh, and "build it and they will come" arguments are getting a little worn don't you think? There are simply not enough people with enough money who want to do this to make a sustainable cashflow... a few millionaires, corperate joy-rides, televised space vacation sweepstakes... thats about it. Making noises about DH-1 style RLVs or "it just has to make $0.01! net profit" are not credible arguments.

PPS: I would even venture to state, that the lack of sucessful smalltime spaceflight outfits, given that rocket technology has not really improved a great deal since carbon fiber composits became available, is strong evidence that it cannot be done for a profit.


"The power of accurate observation is often called cynicism by those that do not have it." - George Bernard Shaw

The glass is at 50% of capacity

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#13 2004-07-13 15:05:42

clark
Member
Registered: 2001-09-20
Posts: 6,348

Re: Chinese interested in Bigelow's inflatables - Alt.SpaceStation in the making?

And a few jobs of the people already working for Bigelow - no new, additional jobs at all - is supposed to make Congress so mad with lust for Bigelow's money that they will all collectivly overlook the risk of giving technology to China for a chance at the piece of the small time action?

So china dosen't throw it up, someone will. This is the same technology that will be used to take us back to the moon and on. This is part and parcel of privatizing the space business.

Making what happen? So far, private and profitable small-time/gov't-free spaceflight is still a pipe dream, even post-SS1, nobody can come up with a really convincing business case.

Umm, well, it is just getting started. It's a bit like expecting Ford to have come out with a Firebird right from the get go instead of the Model T. Howard Hugh didn't start with 747's- he bet his company, and won.

A lot of rich folks are dumping millions into these projects. That expands the industry, and allows for horiztonal growth, instead of the vertical growth we end up with just a couple huge conglomerates. They learn from each other, and from each others failures.

And yes, I am asserting that the economics of space tourism, particularly orbital tourism which will be limited to the super-rich alone, is a questionable proposition in light of the earlier threads.

Then I guess they will have to figure out how to get more people up at a time, or do it cheaper. It's a problem that needs to be solved, not the impossible.

How many people, how often, for how much per ticket and how much for launch?

Yeah, and you don't know. I don't know. It's a f*cking unknown, and because of it, you claim "impossible"! Bleh.

I have heard no convincing response from you or anyone else Clark that it will make a profit... show us the money as the saying goes.

Space tourism. Now shut up.  tongue  big_smile

Elon Musk's little Falcon-V even if it is built will still be too small for manned flight... provided he can even launch his dinky little one-ton toy.

Um, well, lemme see, do I believe you, or him... why on Earth would I doubt Elon Musk and his statements, and his intentions? It seems to me he is on target to do exactly what he states he is going to do. Rutan? The same. Bigelow? Well, yeah, the same. You may not believe in Falcon, but the US military and other large companies do. Now, why the heck should I give a rats ass to your opinion on this?

In fact, I wouldn't put it beyond Congress to axe the madman Bigelow's Chinese relations just to keep China from getting brownie prestige points, since things aren't looking good for Nasa.

Why? Based on one slanted news piece on the internet? LOL! Get real. If this was so super secret, do you think NASA would have been allowed to sell the patents?

Making noises about DH-1 style RLVs or "it just has to make $0.01! net profit" are not credible arguments.

you know, operating a cafe or some other such business, it operates on a razor think profit margin. A lot of companies do. You're argument simply isn't credible in the facy of reality.

I would even venture to state, that the lack of sucessful smalltime spaceflight outfits, given that rocket technology has not really improved a great deal since carbon fiber composits became available, is strong evidence that it cannot be done for a profit.

Well, you would be wrong. I understand that this is a complex science, I also understand that this is an exspensive proposition. However, it is in its infancy, and what we are seeing is the begining of the neccessary technology to achieve lower prices and wider understanding. Da Vinci came up with what may be the first helicopter and car- way beyond the technology and capabilities of the day. As time progress's, the cost of the neccessary technology came down. Look around. A computer used to be the size of a warehouse and cost millions and millions. Now they fit on a desk, or in a brief case and cost dollars.

It didn't happen over night, but it did happen. The same with this. It won't happen on your time schedule, but it will happen, so enjoy the ride. tongue

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#14 2004-07-13 16:33:05

Grypd
Member
From: Scotland, Europe
Registered: 2004-06-07
Posts: 1,876

Re: Chinese interested in Bigelow's inflatables - Alt.SpaceStation in the making?

Interesting point to add to this. If you have read the article in Marsnews.com it wont be seperately the Russians, Esa and the Chinese but an alliance of all three.

The Russians already have proposed an alliance with Esa mainly looking to create the clipper. But they are actively looking to have China join in the space plans.

Im sorry to say it kind of looks like NASA is out in the cold.


Chan eil mi aig a bheil ùidh ann an gleidheadh an status quo; Tha mi airson cur às e.

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#15 2004-07-14 14:10:40

Mad Grad Student
Member
From: Phoenix, Arizona, North Americ
Registered: 2003-11-09
Posts: 498
Website

Re: Chinese interested in Bigelow's inflatables - Alt.SpaceStation in the making?

And do you think China will just kinda take the prepacked payload faring with the TransHab module with the "please don't open and steal our technology or use for military purposes - US St. Dept" tape over the seams and put that on top of a Long March HLV?

Well, they've already been able to pick apart a P-3 Orion. Golly, did that really happen only three years ago? Everything pre-9/11, it's like a different geological era.


A mind is like a parachute- it works best when open.

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#16 2004-07-15 16:54:12

BWhite
Member
From: Chicago, Illinois
Registered: 2004-06-16
Posts: 2,635

Re: Chinese interested in Bigelow's inflatables - Alt.SpaceStation in the making?

Bigelow's research into improved inflatable technology will allow him a powerful market position on all space habitats.

Lots of stuff I ranted about before I heard about Bigelow's plans are now coming true.

Plastic spacecraft - - boronated polyethylene - - is the wave of the future and Bigelow is sinking his fortune into learning how to do it. He holds the TransHab patents, so everyone else starts a few steps behind.

If Russia/China/ESA want to go to Mars, being able to buy a Bigelow TransHab derived vessel nearly off the shelf is a major step forward on affordability. Sned up the billionaire tourist wannabe on a dual purpose mission - - joyriding AND testing durable plastic space habitats.


Give someone a sufficient why and they can endure just about any how

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#17 2004-07-15 18:53:21

BWhite
Member
From: Chicago, Illinois
Registered: 2004-06-16
Posts: 2,635

Re: Chinese interested in Bigelow's inflatables - Alt.SpaceStation in the making?

And do you think China will just kinda take the prepacked payload faring with the TransHab module with the "please don't open and steal our technology or use for military purposes - US St. Dept" tape over the seams and put that on top of a Long March HLV?

If folks are this paranoid about a giant plastic balloon, God help the Pentagon if some American designs genuine ultra low cost Earth to LEO lift.  big_smile


Give someone a sufficient why and they can endure just about any how

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#18 2004-07-28 19:25:49

Yang Liwei Rocket
Member
Registered: 2004-03-03
Posts: 993

Re: Chinese interested in Bigelow's inflatables - Alt.SpaceStation in the making?

I had been reading there are other plans now


'first steps are not for cheap, think about it...
did China build a great Wall in a day ?' ( Y L R newmars forum member )

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#19 2004-08-02 13:38:31

Taralon
Banned
From: Colorado
Registered: 2004-08-02
Posts: 1

Re: Chinese interested in Bigelow's inflatables - Alt.SpaceStation in the making?

And a few jobs of the people already working for Bigelow - no new, additional jobs at all - is supposed to make Congress so mad with lust for Bigelow's money that they will all collectivly overlook the risk of giving technology to China for a chance at the piece of the small time action?

Making what happen? So far, private and profitable small-time/gov't-free spaceflight is still a pipe dream, even post-SS1, nobody can come up with a really convincing business case. And yes, I am asserting that the economics of space tourism, particularly orbital tourism which will be limited to the super-rich alone, is a questionable proposition in light of the earlier threads. How many people, how often, for how much per ticket and how much for launch? Paying off a 100's of millions for development bill replacing sounding rockets or universit payloads? Specialty hypersonic air freight? I have heard no convincing response from you or anyone else Clark that it will make a profit... show us the money as the saying goes.

Neither Russian nor Chinese manned/supply vehicles can possibly be launched for less than around $30-40M, it just isn't going to happen... Elon Musk's little Falcon-V even if it is built will still be too small for manned flight... provided he can even launch his dinky little one-ton toy.

In fact, I wouldn't put it beyond Congress to axe the madman Bigelow's Chinese relations just to keep China from getting brownie prestige points, since things aren't looking good for Nasa.

PS: Oh, and "build it and they will come" arguments are getting a little worn don't you think? There are simply not enough people with enough money who want to do this to make a sustainable cashflow... a few millionaires, corperate joy-rides, televised space vacation sweepstakes... thats about it. Making noises about DH-1 style RLVs or "it just has to make $0.01! net profit" are not credible arguments.

PPS: I would even venture to state, that the lack of sucessful smalltime spaceflight outfits, given that rocket technology has not really improved a great deal since carbon fiber composits became available, is strong evidence that it cannot be done for a profit.

Pardon for me on stepping in and actually providing numbers, but I thought that this piece of your post actually deserved such.  Namely in response Falcon V's ability, well it has a quoted to ISS orbit payload capacity of 3,570 kg which incidently very near the Gemini capsule's wet weight of 3,851 kg.  Seems like saying that it is impossible for use as a manned launch system is currently premature.  Of course deciding that it is going to be used for a manned launch at some point in time is also premature, considering it has not launched unmanned as of yet.  Still Elon Musk is out to make money, and seems to have done a good job of it in the past if he can 'throw' away 1-2 hundred million dollars, and for that reason alone, I think the launches for the Falcon and the future Falcon V will be successful.

Visited by moderator 2022/04/30

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#20 2004-08-05 19:10:40

Morris
Banned
From: Little Rock, Arkansas
Registered: 2004-07-16
Posts: 218

Re: Chinese interested in Bigelow's inflatables - Alt.SpaceStation in the making?

From the story in Aviation Now.

A reduction in NASA microgravity materials and biotechnology research on the ISS will actually help its commercial marketing prospects, the company believes.

All this material on the ISS has been hard for me to assimilate. I thought in the Bush plan that biotechnology research on the ISS was to be increased. In fact, I thought that it was to become the major focus of ISS research. What happened?

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#21 2004-08-05 19:21:43

Morris
Banned
From: Little Rock, Arkansas
Registered: 2004-07-16
Posts: 218

Re: Chinese interested in Bigelow's inflatables - Alt.SpaceStation in the making?

Here's an article that came out July 13. It details the US Government's concerns over the possible Bigelow-China business partnership.

http://www.newsmax.com/archives/article … 0306.shtml

That was pretty emphatic! I wasn't aware, though it's not surprising, that China's space program was so heavily defense focussed. But it looks like the alarms have gone off in all the right places.

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#22 2004-08-12 05:46:56

SpaceNut
Administrator
From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 26,761

Re: Chinese interested in Bigelow's inflatables - Alt.SpaceStation in the making?

It sure would be nice if the US would start using the ISS to its fullest potential but unless funds are budgeted in for the research activity nothing will happen. One due to shuttle grounding but also because of the very high launch costs not to mention ISS operational costs. Even if the research to be done is cheap to do.

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#23 2004-08-12 06:47:23

SpaceNut
Administrator
From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 26,761

Re: Chinese interested in Bigelow's inflatables - Alt.SpaceStation in the making?

On the note of China Calls For Cooperation With US, Japan In Space Program. This is a very good thing in that it will defuse the military tension of a new space race.

Snipet:
"A top Chinese space official said China is willing to cooperate with the United States and Japan in space programs on exploration and finding resources.
During a briefing on China's geospace exploration program in cooperation with Europe, Sun Laiyan, director of the China National Space Administration, said China hopes to cooperate with nations who have space exploration programs."

http://www.spacedaily.com/news/china-04zx.html

china-mkr-bg.jpg

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#24 2022-10-02 07:19:26

tahanson43206
Moderator
Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 12,009

Re: Chinese interested in Bigelow's inflatables - Alt.SpaceStation in the making?

Post 23 was from 2004 ....

As a follow up to the optimism of that time, here is a hint about what happened ...

Per Google search:

Chinese exclusion policy of NASA

In April 2011, the 112th United States Congress banned NASA from engaging in bilateral agreements and coordination with China.

(th)

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