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China Plans Oceanic ‘Space Station’ In South China Sea

...The ministry presentation didn’t give any estimated price tag but Bryan Clark, who formerly served as special assistant to the chief of U.S. naval operations, said the cost could be daunting and its vulnerability to detection would make it less attractive militarily than using a submarine or an unmanned vehicle.

China spent 1.42 trillion yuan ($216 billion) on state and privately-funded research and development in 2015, according to the National Statistics Bureau, while total defense spending this year is projected by the government to increase 7.6 percent to 954.4 billion yuan ($145 billion).

"The kinds of systems that make sense for deep sea are sensor and communication systems," said Clark. "In the Cold War, the U.S. and USSR spent much effort looking for each others’ communication cables and sensors to disrupt them in peacetime or attack them in war. We can assume those efforts would continue today and into the future."..

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