A short-term online training session was held from July 6 to 7 on the application of BeiDou Navigation Satellite System (BDS) to the global fight against COVID-19, introducing China’s experience to the epidemic-stricken world.
The session started simultaneously with the 9th ministerial meeting of the China-Arab States Cooperation Forum (CASCF), shortly after the launch of the last satellite belonging to the BeiDou-3 global satellite navigation system. Its organizers were the International Cooperation Center of China Satellite Navigation Office, BeiDou International Exchange and Training Center based at Beihang, China-Arab BDS/GNSS Center and the Regional Centerfor Space Science and Technology Education for Western Asia/United Nations.
Chaired by Weng Jingnong, Dean of International School, the opening ceremony of the training session included speeches delivered by Ran Zhengqi, Director of China Satellite Navigation Office, Mohamed Ben Amor, Secretary-General of Arab Information and Communication Technologies Organization (AICTO), and Awni Kasawneh, Director General of the Regional Center for Space Science and Technology Education for Western Asia/United Nations.
The training was held in the forms of video conference and live streaming, attracting over 130 participants from 15 countries. Beihang attendees include people in charge of International School and relevant teachers from the School of Electronic and Information Engineering.
During the training session, five Chinese experts and three foreign experts focused on the application of BDS in the fight against COVID-19 and introduced China-Arab cooperation on satellite navigation, basics of satellite navigation systems and the current situation of BDS, BDS application in transportation, BDS products and applications as well as BDS high precision and enhancement technology. Their aims were to facilitate Arab and African users’ understanding, perception and use of BDS and other GNSS systems, promote the application of BDS in the Arab states and enable BDS to contribute to the local anti-epidemic fight. Representatives from Arab and African countries all showed a strong interest in the technology and application of BDS.
The training session was widely praised and gave a boost to the China-Arab Friendship Project of One Hundred, One Thousand and Ten Thousand Talents. It also enhanced China-Arab cooperation on BDS and served as a good communication platform for joint talent cultivation of professionals in satellite navigation technology with African and Arab states.
Based at Beihang University, the BeiDou International Exchange and Training Center of China Satellite Navigation Office was founded in 2012. It has grown into an important base for international exchanges, education and training concerning BDS. The center has cultivated nearly 80 master’s students and doctoral students and held 22 short-term training sessions on the topic of satellite navigation technology and application for over 900 participants from more than 40 countries, laying the talent foundation for the internationalization of BDS.
The Regional Centre for Space Science and Technology Education in Asia and the Pacific (China) (Affiliated to the United Nations) was founded in 2014 and based at Beihang University. It has cultivated 237 master’s students and doctoral students from 24 developing countries and held over 20 short-term training sessions for nearly 1,000 participants from 64 countries.
China-Arab BDS/GNSS Center was co-founded by China Satellite Navigation Office and AICTO in Tunisia in April 2018. It is aimed at powering the China-Arab Friendship Project of One Hundred, One Thousand and Ten Thousand Talents, cultivating professionals in satellite navigation technology with African and Arab states and promoting the application of BDS in countries along the Belt and Road. Until now, it has held three short-term training sessions for over 200 participants from 20 countries.
The Regional Center for Space Science and Technology Education for Western Asia/United Nations was founded in 2012 and based at the Royal Jordanian Geographic Center. It has 14 Arab member states and intends to improve its members’ scientific and technological capabilities so as to enhance their social and economic development. Its training courses cover topics of satellite navigation, space-borne remote sensing, satellite communications, satellite meteorology, space science, etc.
Reported by Cui Yizhuo
Reviewed by Weng Jingnong
Edited by Jia Aiping
Translated by Li Mingzhu