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HK students going to astronaut camp

By Mike Gu in Hong Kong | China Daily | Updated: 2023-07-26 09:01

Hong Kong Chief Secretary for Administration Eric Chan Kwok-ki (second from right in front row) attends the send-off ceremony for students participating in the Young Astronaut Training Camp 2023 at the Hong Kong Space Museum on Tuesday. ANDY CHONG/CHINA DAILY

Thirty Hong Kong secondary students will embark on a journey to experience the country's achievements in space science and technology.

During the eight-day Young Astronaut Training Camp 2023, they will visit key space observation sites, cutting-edge facilities and have face-to-face communication with space experts.

The camp is the 12th of its kind. This year's activity will run from July 29 to Aug 5, during which the students will go to three mainland cities — Beijing, Dunhuang in Gansu province and Xi'an in Shaanxi province.

The students will visit sites such as the Technology and Engineering Center for Space Utilization of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, the National Astronomical Observatories and Lenghu Mars town in Qinghai province.

They will also experience a rocket launch and view space station work with virtual reality technologies, participate in astronomy science and manned space science lectures, and take rocket model production courses.

The Leisure and Cultural Services Department of the Hong Kong government and the Chinese General Chamber of Commerce in Hong Kong have organized the camp since 2009, with about 330 Hong Kong students having participated.

Eric Chan Kwok-ki, Hong Kong's chief secretary for administration, encouraged all the young campers to seize this opportunity to follow the example of the country's space heroes.

He added that during the short recruitment period of less than one month, the SAR government has received 120 application forms and selected 30 students.

Timothy Ho, curator of the Hong Kong Space Museum, said that each middle school in Hong Kong has the right to nominate two students, after which three rounds of selection will be conducted.

Jonathan Choi, chairman of the Chinese General Chamber of Commerce in Hong Kong, said that China's space industry is developing in full swing. He hoped trainees in the camp will have an opportunity to become real astronauts someday and contribute to space development in the SAR and the Chinese mainland.

Ngai Yiu-tung, a student in the camp from Christina Alliance Cheng Wing Gee College, said that this is a great opportunity for the youth to experience the rapid development of the country. He said he has decided to major in space engineering and hopes his dream of going into space will come true one day.

Lui Pui-ying, a student from Po Leung Kuk Mrs Ma Kam Ming-Cheung Fook Sien College, said that she admires Yang Liwei most among all the astronauts. She added that the camp will definitely be an unforgettable experience for her.

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