Changsha turning into innovative center of China
Changsha, the capital of Hunan Province, is on the frontline of Chinese innovation.
Hi-tech industries related to the Internet and biological medicine have consistently enjoyed 20 percent growth rates in the past few years.
Changsha is also home of the Tianhe super computer and is a leading center in 3D printing technology.
Changsha, the capital of Hunan Province, is on the frontline of Chinese innovation. [Photo: VCG]
Our reporter Yang Guang is in Changsha with the "Streaming down the Yangtze" team. We earlier had a conversation with him on the "Beijing Hour":
1.What can you tell us about the innovation and technology in Changsha?
In the morning we visited an intelligent construction company in Changsha. The company manufactures prefabricated construction components or units that can be assembled on-site to form the complete building.
All the parts of one building, mainly made of concrete and steel are made in factory in advance instead of being produced on-site. So in this way construction becomes an assembly work compared to traditional brick laying one storey after another, which needs a great deal of labour and time.
All the materials for construction being produced in closed factory also means there is no pollution or dust concerns on site.
Then in the afternoon we visited a driverless car testing project in Changsha. Driverless car, which is a hot issue around the whole world, is also developing very fast in Changsha. I personally experienced the driverless car myself in this project. Being in an unmanned car is truly weird but the whole trip went so steady that I didn't really feel the difference compared with cars with drivers. Due to safety reasons we only ran 30 kilometers per hour and the whole route was relatively straight. But the staff told me on the testing highway the driverless car is able to reach 100 kilometers per hour and can overtake other cars and change lanes.
I also learned that by the end of this year, Changsha will have its first driverless bus route, which is a very big step forward in terms of driverless car development. Those were the innovative elements of the city that really impressed me.
2. What is the team's schedule for today? What highlights can we expect?
Today we will remain in Changsha and have several other interesting places to visit. First there will be a maglev train trip that will start in an hour. It's the first 100 percent China developed low-speed maglev train of the country. It connects the International airport and the railway station of Changsha. Construction was completed in 2015. As of last month, the maglev had carried nearly 6 million passengers.
Then the main theme of the rest of the day would be manufacturing. Changsha is becoming an innovative center of China as I just gave some examples on that but meantime the city is already among the best in manufacturing. Also in the morning we will visit Sany Heavy Industry, a heavy machinery manufacturing company headquartered in Changsha. It is the sixth-largest heavy equipment manufacturer in the world, and the first in its industry in China to enter the FT Global 500. So we are expected to discover a great accomplishment in Chinese manufacturing and see how it is to be involved in China 2025 strategy.
Then in the afternoon we will take the high speed train to go back to Yueyang Port and from there we will be back to our passenger ship and continue our trip streaming down the Yangtze River.