China in Africa


Mombasa-Nairobi standard gauge railway (SGR) revisited

The SGR passenger train covers a total distance of 472 kilometres and is the first standard gauge railway completed in Africa. It was designed using Chinese technology, standard, equipment and funding. SGR is run by AfriStar, with 2,248, or nearly 80%, of its employees from Kenya. Four passenger trains run on a daily basis. Since its opening in May 2017, the SGR has carried 4 million passengers, with an average attendance rate of 95%. In addition, 16 freight trains run daily on average, and nearly 6 million tons of cargo was transported in 2019, up 70% compared with 2018. The SGR passes through Kenya’s largest conservation park, Tsavo National Park.

Belt and Road news, Jasnuary 12, 2020

Mombasa-Nairobi standard gauge railway (SGR) revisited

The SGR passenger train covers a total distance of 472 kilometres and is the first standard gauge railway completed in Africa. It was designed using Chinese technology, standard, equipment and funding. SGR is run by AfriStar, with 2,248, or nearly 80%, of its...

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Kenya inaugurates 50 MW solar power farm in Garissa

One of the largest solar farms it Africa, it was designed and built, within one year, by China Jiangxi Corporation for China’s International Economic and Technical Co-operation (CJIC). The annual output is 100,000 MWH and meets the power demand of 70,000 households...

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China launches microsatellite for Ethiopia

The wide-range multispectral remote-sensing microsatellite donated to Ethiopia was sent into space together with eight other satellites. Weighing about 65 kg and having a design life of two years, the satellite can obtain remote-sensing data for agriculture, forestry,...

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China deepens bilateral aviation cooperation with Zimbabwe

According to official sources, the Chinese government has financed more than 4,900 Zimbabwean officers and specialists to attend seminars and training courses in China From the 1990s to the present, the Chinese government has financed more than 4,900 Zimbabwean...

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China supports agricultural high school education in Cameroon

Started in 2016, the Technical and Professional Agricultural High School in Yabassi offers a modern technical infrastructure which helps to train young Camerooneans in basic technologies even before they enter a university. The high school with an enrolment of 200...

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Chinese companies start 5G technology trial in Uganda

ZTE and MTN Uganda have carried out a 5G technology trial in Kampala, Uganda's capital, on January 17, in the presence of Uganda's Prime Minister Ruhakana Rugunda. According to Uganda government sources, the country might become the first in East Africa to have a...

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Overview of last view Blogs

China has established 121,000 hydrological observation points for flood countermeasures, many for quality control

According to a press conference of the Ministry of Water Affairs, China has now established a network of hydrological observatories of its large rivers and their major tributaries, for flood countermeasures and water quality control. Observation points now number 121,000, with 3,154 stations, 14,286 surface water quality stations and 26,550 groundwater quality stations.

Japan JST China news January 21, 2020

Photosynthetic capacity at night makes “mile-a-minute” weed a particularily harmful invasive plant

Mikania micrantha, dubbed “mile-a-minute” weed, is one of the top 100 worst invasive species and one of the most harmful invasive plants, also in south China. WAN Fanghao, Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences, and colleagues have prepared a 1.79 Gb reference chromosome map and have shown that half of the genome is composed of long terminal repeat retrotransposons, including a whole genome duplication event. Mikania micrantha achieves higher photosynthetic capacity by CO2 absorption at night to supplement its carbon fixation during the day, as well as enhanced stem photosynthesis efficiency. Furthermore, the metabolites of the plant can increase the availability of nitrogen by enriching microbes that participate in nitrogen cycling pathways.

Nature Communication

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CAS Shenyang Institute of Automation develops novel image forgery detection technology

The new technology is based on an improved method to detect motion blur. A parameterized motion blur kernel is mapped into the 3D pose space of the camera to obtain a 3D pose set, and the intersection of the 3D pose sets (shared pose set) corresponding to multiple image patches is obtained. Compared with state-of-the-art methods, the detection accuracy of the proposed method is claimed to be improved by more than 20%.

“Agriculture 4.0” supported by drones and AI in Guizhou Province

On an area of ​​5,000 mu (approximately 333.3 hectares) with an average altitude of more than 2,200 meters at Wei Ning Yi Hui Miao Autonomous County, engineers seek lead technologies for vegetable production such as Chinese or white cabbage and radish. 5G-supported drones with multispectral equipment monitor crop growth, soil moisture and weather conditions and make decisions using an AI judgment system. Remote operation maintenance and quality tracing will be installed in Guiyang city. If the “smart farm” trial is successful, 400,000-mu (approximately 26,700 hectares) vegetable bases will also be built in all prefectures. 

Japan JST China news, January 21, 2020

Beijing University of Sports tests “Smart Ice Field” for 2022 winter Olympics

In Heilongjiang Ice Base Speed ​​Skating Pavilion, a model system acquires exercise information in real time based on AI technology. It automatically tracks the position on ice, draws the trajectory of the run, and calculates a speed-related index. The AI component is based on viewing angle algorithms and full panorama connection technology.

Japan JST China news, January 21, 2020

FAST radiotelescope in Guiyang officially in operation

The Five-hundred-meter Aperture Spherical radio Telescope (FAST), a single-dish telescope with a diameter of half a kilometer and a receiving area equivalent to about 30 football fields, was officially taken in operation. It is located in a naturally deep and round karst depression in Southwest China’s Guizhou province.

Xinhua news release, January 13, 2020


Structure of African swine fever virus elucidated

RAO Zihe and WANG Xiangxi from the CAS Institute of Biophysics and BU Zhigao from the CAS Harbin Veterinary Research Institute have determined the structure of the African swine fever virus (ASFV) at a resolution of 4.1-angstroms, using an optimized image reconstruction strategy. The virus’s structural details will provide strategies for vaccine development.

CAS news release, January 16, 2020


Graphene nanostructures provide path to quantum materials

GAO Hongjun and colleagues from CAS Institute of Physics have achieved atomically precise folding of graphene nanostructures through STM tip-induced manipulation technology. They were able to fold graphene nanoislands in an arbitrarily chosen direction, constructed bilayer graphene stacks withs a tunable twist angle and a tubular edge connection between the layers, and created intramolecular junctions of bicrystal graphene nanoislands. Atomically precise “origami” can be used for the construction of quantum materials and quantum devices.

CAS news release, January 16, 2020

© GAO Hongjun, CAS DICP

Solar energy to methanol pilot plant opened in Lanzhou

The project initiated by LI Can of CAS Dalian Institute of Chemical Physics combines hydrogen production by electrocatalytic water splitting with highly selective, carbon dioxide hydrogenation to methanol. Energy consumption is reduced to 4.0-4.2 kWh / m3 hydrogen. Carbon dioxide hydrogenation to methanol uses a bimetal oxide catalyst (ZnO-ZrO2). Methanol selectivity is greater than 90%, and degradation of the catalyst after 3000 hours of operation is less than 2%. A1,000-ton scale demonstration project was commissioned in the Green Chemical Park in Lanzhou New District.

CAS news release, January 17, 2020


Quantum satellite “Micius” successfully tested for quantum communication

China’s quantum satellite QUESS (Quantum Experiments at Space Scale, nickname Micius), jointly developed by the University of Science and Technology of China, QuantumCTek Co., Ltd. and the Jinan Institute of Quantum Technology, was successfully linked up with a mobile quantum ground station and conducted an encrypted data transmission in Jinan, Shandong Province. The latest mobile version installed on a vehicle has been significantly reduced in weight and construction cost. The experimental quantum communication network in Jinan was further connected to the Beijing-Shanghai quantum communication backbone network.

Xinhua news release, January 2, 2020

Chinese consortium launches 10,000 protists genome program

The joint program of CAS Institute of Hydrobiology, Tibet University, Henan Agricultural University, CAAS Lanzhou Veterinary Research Institute, CAS Beijing Institute of Genomics and Huazhong University of Science and Technology starts out with over 3,000 species of eukaryotic algae and protozoa kept by CAS Institute of Hydrobiology and is scheduled to extend to 10,000 protists within 3 years. Its goal is to better understand biodiversity, the origin and evolution of multicellular organisms and sexual reproduction, and to push forward the research on environmental protection, nutrition and disease control.

Xinhua news release, January 3, 2020 

Chinese hospital masters 3D printed tantalum knee implants

The incidence of osteoarthritis among Chinese is about 2.2 to 3.5 percent, with an upward trend. The First Hospital affiliated to Army Medical University (AMU)  so far has conducted 27 clinical trials on knee implants based on customized 3D-printed porous tantalum. After 3D CT scan of a patient’s bone and bone defects, it takes only 72 hours to design a porous tantalum implant and 3D print the customized implant.

China Daily news release, January 6, 2020

State Power Investment and CCRC introduce China’s first hydrogen bus

Total length of the bus is 12 meters, hydrogen loading time is 15 minutes, and cruising range is over 600 km. Energy conversion efficiency is 53-55%, three times that of an internal combustion engine. The engine comprises a fuel cell system with an engine rated output of 60 kW and a mixed power supply system with 67 kW. The bus is produced in Ningbo, Zhejiang Province, and by 2025, Ningbo is planning to build from 20 to 25 hydrogen refueling stations for a target of 1,500 vehicles using them.

Yicai Global news release, January 3, 2020

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Top scientific honors awarded to HUANG Xuhua and ZENG Qingcun

China’s highest ranked scientific award, the State Eminent Science and Technology Award, has been given to an engineer and a meteorologist. HUANG Xuhu played a key role in China’s nuclear submarine development. In December 1970, China launched Long March I, becoming the fifth nation to have a nuclear submarine. ZENG Qingcun, a renowned atmospheric scientist, helped modernize China’s weather forecast systems and meteorological satellite remote sensing technologies. The prize money is 8 million yuan ($1.14 million) for each receipient.

China Daily news release, January 10, 2020

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© China Meteorological Agency