People's Republic of China in Cislunar Space: Activities, Motivations and Implications

April, 2024
IDA document: 3002255
FFRDC: Science and Technology Policy Institute
Type: Documents , Space
Kelsey L. Schoeman, Irina Liu See more authors
This report summarizes China’s past, present and future cislunar space activities, which are a part of China’s broader plan to establish a long-term presence in space. It then discusses the nation’s motivations for pursuing these cislunar space activities — international and domestic prestige, scientific discovery, economic benefits and potential military advantages — by analyzing official documents and press releases, and statements by officials. Lastly, the report concludes with the implications for the U.S.-China space competition, including cislunar space norms and governance, space domain awareness and knowledge sharing and coordination.