Rockets were invented in China, the home of many modern inventions, including ancient astronomy, and were used originally for military purposes in the 13th century. The Chinese space program was founded in October 1956 by the father of Chinese rocketry, Tsien Hsue Shen, who lived in California in the 1930s until his expulsion as a Chinese spy.
In recent times there have been three manned spaceflights, highlighting China’s ambitious space program and generating worldwide interest. Future missions are planned, including a mission to go to Mars.
The explosive growth of China’s innovative and rapidly developing space program in recent years has made it a "hot" topic in international space policy. This follow up to Harvey's earlier book, China's Space Program - From Conception To Manned Spaceflight (2004) bring us up to date with everything that is happening in the Chinese space program today and looks at its ambitious future. The author briefly summarizes how this program evolved from medieval times, and uncovers the truth behind the bland, unreliable, and generally uninformative news releases issued around each space mission. It also examines the key features of the program, previously unknown to the outside world.