A young engineer dedicates his talents and passion to Chinese space exploration


Huang Zhen, 39, is one of the youngest deputy chief designers working on China’s manned space program. He conquered a number of key technologies in just a few years with his teammates and was awarded the May 4 Chinese Youth Medal on Tuesday.

The talented engineer said his space dream stemmed from a live report he saw on TV while a university student.

“I was in my freshman year of college in 2003 when Shenzhou-5, China’s first manned spacecraft, was successfully launched. The whole country was jubilant. So at that time, I thinking about how to serve the country better,” Huang recalled. , saying that aerospace science was his best bet.

Huang has been directly involved in the national key space project since he started working at the Fifth Institute of the Chinese Academy of Space Technology in 2010 after earning a doctorate.

From Shenzhou-8 to Shenzhou-11, Huang successfully broke several bottlenecks during shutdown, orbit and docking with the space station after countless ground simulations and experiments with his teammates. .

They laid a solid foundation for the implementation of China’s manned space missions.

Huang Zhen is working with his colleague. /Chinese Media Group

Huang Zhen is working with his colleague. /Chinese Media Group

Without any prior experience, returning a large spacecraft from the moon 380,000 kilometers away is no easy task.

Huang, the general technology manager, led a team of six and rose to the challenge. He was only 30 when manned lunar exploration studies began in 2013.

Huang’s team worked day and night, and after three years, they launched a new multi-purpose spacecraft return capsule that performed better than the Shenzhou spacecraft.

In 2020, Huang, who was promoted to assistant chief designer, led the team to create a new generation of manned spacecraft test vessels, which returned to Earth from an altitude of 8,000 kilometers for the first time.

Huang Zhen interviews young aerospace engineers. /Chinese Media Group

Huang Zhen interviews young aerospace engineers. /Chinese Media Group

The young team, with an average age of 35, has made tremendous progress, with breakthroughs in manned lunar lander technology and survivability in an extreme lunar environment.

“In the future, I hope to establish a route between Earth and the Moon. Just as we usually take airplanes, we can go to the Moon for business,” Huang said.

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