Funeral held for pioneering space scientist

Updated: 2016-04-19 07:37

By China Daily(China Daily)

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A funeral for Liang Sili, one of China's top space scientists, was held at Beijing's Babaoshan Revolutionary Cemetery on Monday.

An academic at the Chinese Academy of Sciences and the International Academy of Astronautics, Liang died from an illness on Thursday morning at age 91.

President Xi Jinping has offered condolences to Liang's family, saying that the scientist dedicated his life to China's space program and contributed greatly to making the country a strong space power. The president said Liang was respected for his patriotism, devotion and excellent work style.

With wide-ranging achievements in research on missile and rocket control systems, Liang was considered one of the founders of China's space industry.

Born in Beijing in August 1924, Liang was the youngest son of Liang Qichao, a leading reformist who lived during the late Qing Dynasty (1644-1911).

After graduating from the University of Cincinnati in 1949, Liang returned to China and joined the then Ministry of Posts and Telecommunications.

He started a career in the space sector in 1956 when he was transferred to the then Fifth Academy of the Ministry of National Defense, the country's first missile, rocket and spacecraft research body.

Liang helped to develop various types of ballistic missiles and launch rockets and also played an important role in establishing several key space programs.

He was elected as an academic at the International Academy of Astronautics in 1987 and at the Chinese Academy of Sciences in 1993.

 Funeral held for pioneering space scientist

Liang Hong (center), daughter of Liang Sili, holds a portrait of her father at his funeral at Babaoshan Revolutionary Cemetery, the main resting place for highranking revolutionary heroes and government officials, in Beijing on Monday. Liang, 91, died on Thursday from an undisclosed illness. Wang Zhuangfei / China Daily

(China Daily 04/19/2016 page3)