Three famous astronauts are expected to visit China during from July 19 to August 3 this year for a non-governmental trip sponsored by chemical giant DuPont, a Chinese space group announced Thursday in Beijing.
Yang Junhua, deputy director of the Chinese Society of Astronautics (CSA), said the three astronauts, Charles M. Duke, Charles F. Bolden, and Mae C. Jemison, will visit China's space research and development institutes, including those that develop China's spaceships, satellites and carrier rockets.
The three astronauts are also scheduled to tour the scenic spot of the Three Gorges on the Yangtze River, the world's third longest river during their China trip, Yang told a press conference.
During their stay in Beijing, they will also take part in an international youth's meeting of astronauts due to be held in the national capital, and address China's major astronautics universities, and would possibly meet with some Chinese counterparts, sources with CSA said.
Thomas Powell, DuPont corporate vice president, said DuPont felt sponsoring the US Astronauts' trip to China was a natural fit with the company.
DuPont materials have been contributing and developing with the humankind's efforts to explore the universe for the past half century, he said.
In the Apollo project that first landed man on the Moon, out of the 21 layers of the astronaut's space suits, 20 were from DuPont materials, he said.
In the Mars project one year ago, DuPont electronics products enabled the "Spirit" and "Opportunity" Mars Rovers to transmit clear images of Mars to the Earth, Powell told reporters.