NASA Administrator Michael Griffin said Tuesday he has accepted an invitation to visit China for talks on possible cooperation in some areas of space.
He announced this while answering questions raised by lawmakers at the Senate Subcommittee on Science and Space. Agenda of the trip has not yet been fixed, local press reports quoted NASA officials as saying.
China has in recent years made notable achievements in space exploration. It becomes the world's third country to send human into orbit, after the former Soviet Union and United States. The launch of its first manned space mission in 2003 was followed by a longer mission carrying two astronauts in 2005.
"The United States needs good competitors and it needs good partners and sometimes they can be the same," said Griffin, who cited the example of current cooperation between the United States and Russia on the international space station.
(Xinhua News Agency April 26, 2006)