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The Ministry of Science and Technology
People's Republic of China

N0.232 August 20,2000
    * China’s New Energy Industry
    * Joint Innovation Institute
    * China’s Photosynthesis Improvement
    * Chinese Traditional Herbs Treating AIDS
    * World First Carp Genetic Chain Map
    * China’s Advanced Submarine Robot
    * China’s Advanced Marine Pharmaceutical Research

China’s New Energy Industry

Thanks to nearly two decades’ research, development and experiment, China’s new and renewable energy industries have taken a basically established shape. Atpresent, the annual development and utilization of new and renewable energy has reached 3 million tons of standard coal equivalent, about 0.2% of the total commercial energy consumption in the country. The said percentage has not taken into account the traditional utilizations such as biomass energy and small hydraulic power generation in rural areas.

China is rich in new and renewable energy resources. Statistics show that the annual solar radiation volume received by the country is larger than 5.02 million KJ per square meter; the area enjoying 2200 hours of annual sunshine takes up about two thirds of the national territories; the theoretical reserves of wind energy reach 3.226 billion KW; fine geothermal reserves record a perspective volume for 200 billions ton of standard coal equivalent and directly usable geothermal resources provided by 40 and more geothermal fields have reached 3.16 billiontons of standard coal equivalent. China is also rich in biomass energy resourcessuch as 700 million tons of crop stalks yield per year, of which 280 to 350 million tons can be used as energy sources. The firewood supplied on a rational basis accounts for 158 million tons. In addition, there are abundant resources of poultry droppings and industrial organic waste water that can be used for methane gas producimg. The poultry and stock droppings from intensive breeding farmsreach 403.36 million tons a year, of which the dry matter takes up 37.155 million tons.

By the end of 1999, there have been 24 wind power fields in the country with the grid installed wind power generation capacity over 260,000 KW and 170,000 off grid wind power generation units; the solar water heater has an annual production capacity for 4 million square meters and a cumulative output reached 15 million square meters, ranking the first in the world; China’s annual production capacity of solar cells is 45 MW and the cumulative installed capacity of photovoltaic power generation has exceeded 13 MW; there are in the country 200 and 540 projects handling industrial waste water and domestic animal droppings respectively, annually producing methane gas at 320 million and 60 million cubic meters respectively; there are 6 million and more family based methane gas tanks in the country, producing 16 billion cubic meters of gas annually; 160 stalk gasification demonstration projects at the village level provide 70 million cubic meters of gas for village dwellers; the cumulative electricity generated by small hydraulic powers has reached 22 million KW; low temperature geothermal heating system has benefited an area of 8 million square meters and the installed high temperature geothermal power generation capacity reached 25 MW. Research and development on other new energies such as tidal and wave energies and hydraulic energy have witnessed progresses.

Joint Innovation Institute

On July 18, 2000, IBM (China) signed agreements with Peking University and Tsinghua University separately on the joint establishment of Peking UniversityIBM Innovation Institute and Tsinghua UniversityIBM Innovation Institute.

IBM is supposed to provide major software and hardware needed for the research and experiments, research experts and most running funds while the two universities will provide the space for offices and experiments making, internet access and teacher and graduate sources neccessary in researches. The Institutes will mainly work on the cutting edge issues such as ecommerce technology, knowledge management and indepth calculation.

At the signing ceremony, Chi Huisheng, Vice President of Peking University said that in recent years Peking University has kept an eye on the collaboration with transnational hightech businesses. The close cooperation with high tech businesses like IBM in innovation research will bring more enlightenment and experience to Peking University.

Gong Ke, Vice President of Tsinghua University expressed that the joint establishment of the innovation research institute with IBM is a major step for Tsinghua to join hands with internationally renowned enterprises to encourage and discover innovation and convert the innovation results into productivity and it is also an important exploration for approaches to the integration of industry and universities over the world. This will constitute a stimulus to China’s economic development and technological innovations.

IBM has provided not only funds and equippments but also its best world skilled expertise, advanced research management and results conversion mechanism. The creation of two joint innovation institutes will make more opportunities for university teachers and students to further know giant international businesses, promote their collaboration with IBM’s expertise on the latest cutting edge technologies and to learn from each other and make progress together.

China’s Photosynthesis Improvement

Na Zhongyuan, Head of Yunnan Institute of Biological Agriculture announced on July 16, 2000 that his GPIT has eventually found a way to address the problem of photosynthesis improvement, the first of its kind in the world.

Photosynthesis improvement is one of the many approaches to increase the yield of agricultural produce. However, how to improve photosynthesis remained an unsolved mystery in the world before the new achievement.

GPIT developed by Na Zhongyuan is the first to have solved the problem. Experiments over Tibet, Yunnan, Shandong, Heilongjiang and Jilin show that GPIT is able to increase photosynthesis by 50%-400%.

On Zhongdian plateau at an altitude of 3276 meters above the sea level under the jurisdiction of Diqing Tibetan Autonomous Region situated in the northwest  ection of Yunnan Province, the effective accumulated temperauure during the corn's whole growth period is 493 degree centigrade, less than half of the world acknowledged effective accumulative temperature; the lowest air temperature in the corn growth period is minus 5.4 degree centigrade and the lowest surface temperature minus 9.5 degree centigrade. The application of GPIT has made corn growth in a fine state and produced a high yield of 499 kilos per mu(1mu=0.0667ha.).

The results of demonstration experiments in high sea level and cold areas in the country have shown that GPIT is able to greatly shorten the plants’ growth period by 7-15 days for wheat, 10-20 days for rice and 30-40 days for corns.

GPIT has also solved the century's old difficulties relating to self resistance expression and diseases on root ,stem and leave. In 1999 a hundred mu of consecutive patch of wheat was put into intercomparison experiment in Guandu District,Kunming Municipality. The wheat applied with only pesticides for three times saw remained serious attack of powdery mildew while a hundred mu of wheat applied with GPIT basically saw now diseased plant though pesticide was not applied.

Last year 21 million mu of farmland in the country were applied with GPIT and the area under the treatment will go up to 30 million mu this year.

It is estimated that by the 2030s the Chinese can be sustained only if the food production increases by one third on the current basis. About 2% of China’s territories are at an high attitude above the sea level or in the cold belt where most povertystricken population dwell. GPIT will not only help free the poverty stricken people from famine but will also create a bright prospect for China’s agricultural production. Its future application over the world will also make China render its due contributions to addressing the world food problem.

Chinese Traditional Herbs Treating AIDS

On July 1st, 2000, Vice Premier and Minister of Health of Thailand announced that the SHcompound, a Chinese traditional herb formula developed by Chinese scientists, has completed its phases I and II clinical experiments in Thailand and achieved major progress.

SHcompound is developed by Prof. Luo Shide with Kunming Institute of Botany,Chinese Academy of Sciences. Since 1985, Prof. Luo has organized scientists to seek for AIDS viruses resistance in Chinese traditional herbs. At the end of 1998,they had studied more than 1000 types of herbs on their anti HIV activity and discovered that 150 and more of them are of anti HIV property. They published the Studies on AntiHIV Activities of Chinese Traditional Herbs in this context.

After that they tracked anti HIV activities of these herbs with a priority weight on the root bark of white mulberry. Their research result was granted with national patent right and listed in the major natural drug programs for the 9th fiveyear plan period by the Chinese Academy of Sciences.

By working on the related elements of modern pharmacology and Chinese traditional medical theory together, Prof. Luo produced the compound mixed with other four herbs according to the matching principle of Chinese traditional medicine. On the basis of the evaluations made by the medical experts in Yunnan Province, Prof. Luo and his team optimized the five herbs in the formula and eventually fixed the composition of SHcompound. In the meanwhile, they worked out the corresponding manufacturing techniques, quality standards, external antiHIV activity,acuteness and toxicity for the compound.

In April 1999 when his excellency visited Kunming Institute of Botany, the Vice Premier of Thailand expressed his interest in SHcompound and the intention of cooperation. On July the same year, Thailand and Kunming Institute of Botany signed the agreement on collaborative studies of SHcompound in Thailand for one year. To support the efforts, the Yunnan Provincial Government financed a research budget of Rmb 500,000. The Institute of Drug Plants subordinated to Thai Ministry of Health and the Thai Diseases Control Center repeated the studies made by Prof. Luo and his team and concluded with identical scientific data.

Since March this year, both sides have jointly made phases I and II clinical experiments on AIDS patients with SHcompound at Sapatong Hospital in Thailand. 9 of the 28 AIDS patients treated with the compound have found greatly reduced HIV concentration in their bodies with 16 recorded for a stabilized HIV concentration, which shows that the new drug is able to restrain HIV viruses. In the meanwhile 3 patients declared no effect on them as they are at the advanced stage. The experiment results have shown that SHcompound is a safe and reliable antiHIV drug without toxic byeffect and the more encouraging thing about the new drug is that it costs only one tenth that of corresponsing western medicines.

World First Carp Genetic Chain Map

Chinese researchers has not long ago successfully worked out a carp’s genetic chain map, the first of its kind in the world. The development has created necessary technical conditions for future breeding of carp species of certain fine desired properties at DNA molecule level. Experts designated by the Ministry of Agriculture for evaluating the result believe that the study scores the leading position in the similar international studies while it is the first time for the world to see a carp’s genetic chain map and the cold resistance analysis concluded from the studies of DNA molecules.

It is reported that on the map the known DNA molecules closely related to the quality of fine carp species are accurately sequenced and marked in the capacity of each other’s neighbors. There are 262 DNA molecule marks on the map, of which 178 are genetic ones. These molecules were naturally divided into 50 groups which are accurately matched with the number of haploid chromosomes. In 1999 the Chinese Academy of Aquatic Sciences kicked off a research program working on genetic chain maps for carps and silver carps. Before this, similar genetic maps have been drawn by overseas researchers only for trout and Tilapia mossaambica in the world Experts of Heilongjiang Institute of Aquatic Science, the Chinese Academy of Aquatic Sciences who worked on the projects said that this is a fine “map” for carp’s DNA molecules, which presents a clear picture of the DNA molecules’ position on chromosomes and their interrelationship that effect or determine the fine quality of carps. This will also make possible humanity’s carp breeding through the DNA molecule modification. In the meanwhile, the study group has specially analyzed carps’ property of cold resistance and successfully obtained 6 related genetic marks, whose positions were then defined on the map. The finding implies that with the help of these genes the fish vulnerable to cold attack could be turned into species of cold resistance.


China’s Advanced Submarine Robot

Shenyang Institute of Automation subordinated to the Chinese Academy of Sciences, the largest robot development base in the country is now working on a handed submarine robot capable of diving as deep as 6,000 meters, the first of its kind in the world. It is briefed by Wang Tianran, Head of the Automation Institute that they are working on a handed submarine robot capable of diving as deep as 6,000 meters on a crawling motion. The new robot will be more advanced than its elder brother who is only able to make the deep ocean observation though the diving depth is the same.

In September 1995, China successfully launched its submarine robot to dive in the ocean as deep as 6,000 meters, which made China capable of surveying and mapping 97% of the world ocean floors except trenches. This is of great significance to ocean floor mineral resources exploration. So far only few countries in the world can manufacture submarine robots capable of 6,000meterdeep diving.

National Information Security Industrial Base

On July 20, 2000, China’s first national high tech research and development information security industrial base broke the earth in Chengdu Hightech Industrial Development Park. The development has indicated that information security industrial base will gain an accelerated developmentas an important industrial component in China .

Cosponsored by Chengdu Hightech Industrial Development Zone, No. 30 Research Institute of the Ministry of Information Technology and Telecom Industries and Chengdu Weishitong Information Industry Co. Ltd., the information security base is defined with the following major objectives: provide general basic information security products to the domestic market; provide technical support and services for building the national economy into an information oneand train personnel qualified for the information security industry. The new base will focus on the industrialization of general base information security products, establishing a complete industrial system dedicated to manufacturing, R&D, diffusion and applications of these kinds of produsts. Within a timeframe of 3-5 years an information security industrial group will be shaped up in West China and a group of information security enterprises competitive both domestically and internationally will be incubated so that they will become an important pillar able to create an annual revenue above Rmb 1 billion in the national information security industry.

China’s Advanced Marine Pharmaceutical Research

On July 25, 2000 at the Seminar on Marine Drug Development Prospects held in Qingdao, 200 and more Chinese experts on marine drug studies unanimously agreed that China has achieved remarkable progress in the application of marine drugs in AIDS treatment and protecting ischemic brain cells after cerebral thrombosis.

In the early 1990s, PSS drug developed by Prof. Guan Huashi, President of Qingdao Marine University and academician of Chinese Academy of Engineering, caused astir in the medical communities both at home and abroad. The Gantangzhi and Hailite developed afterwards have further promoted the development of China’s marine pharmaceutical industry. Up to date, the Juganguzhi developed by Prof. Guang for AIDS treatment is the first of its kind in the country of China’s own independent intellectual property rights. The new marine drug will soon be approved to go for phase I clinical testing. Another grade I marine drug, DJuganzhi has been allowed by the State Drug Supervision and Administration Bureau for phase I clinical testing. The Participants agreed that the said two marine drugs indicate that China’s marine pharmaceutical studies have reached a new level.

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