This is according to research recently published by the Australian Strategic Policy Institute (ASPI), a non-partisan think tank. ASPI found that China has become the leader in research into a variety of critical fields, including military sciences like hypersonic weaponry and underwater drones, and key so-called "green" technologies like electric vehicles (EVs) and battery production. (Related: Air Force general warns: China boosts military capability by recruiting both current and former U.S. service members.)
ASPI examined some 2.2 million peer-reviewed academic papers published between 2018 and 2022. The think tank discovered that China accounted for 80 percent of overall research output, including 73.3 percent of high-impact research for hypersonic detection, tracking and characterization, and 56.9 percent of underwater drone research, including undersea wireless communications.
Among the 10 percent of the most cited papers published during that period, China led research in 19 out of 23 key technologies. These 23 fields were chosen because they are considered key to the trilateral security partnership among the U.S., the United Kingdom and Australia, which have joined up to form the new anti-Chinese security pact known as AUKUS.
The U.S. is only able to compete in research into artificial intelligence and quantum technology. Of the six AI-related fields, China leads in four – including autonomous drones. Meanwhile, the U.S. ranks first in just two and is roughly tied with China in quantum computing technology research.
In the emerging electric car industry, China has already started its aggressive expansion and takeover of existing EV-related industries.
In 2022, Tesla continued to lead in terms of EV market share at 18.9 percent. However, three Chinese EV manufacturers combined now control a bigger combined share of 27.7 percent. Tesla's market share last year was 3.4 percentage points narrower than it was in 2021. Furthermore, China's largest EV manufacturer BYD has now captured the second largest market share at 11.5 percent, nearly double the 6.9 percent it had in 2021.
China is also dominating the EV supply chain. Four of the top five producers of insulators for the lithium-ion batteries needed for EVs are Chinese companies, which command a combined market share of 63 percent.
BYD and other Chinese EV makers also purchase more than 60 percent of the world's lithium-ion batteries, and Chinese companies are now opening plants for EVs and batteries around the world, including in Germany and Brazil.
Nikkei Asia reported that due to China's dominance in the field, it is now almost impossible for Western nations to "decouple" from China and "reduce their reliance on Chinese supply chains for EVs and other products."
In the military sphere, China is also doing everything it can to dominate, especially when it comes to research into hypersonic missiles. These missiles can fly at more than five times the speed of sound, and once they can be realistically manufactured at a rate usable for modern militaries, they will be seen as a potentially game-changing weapon.
The ASPI report noted that China is developing hypersonic missiles that are even faster than current prototypes and can have less predictable trajectories – an intentional design element that can help it penetrate enemy missile defense networks.
Considering how far ahead it is of its competitors, the ASPI report warned that there is a very high risk that China will end up dominating this technology. It doesn't help that the main institutions leading in this field and producing high-impact research are almost entirely located in China.
Another critical research field with potential military applications is autonomous underwater vehicles. China accounts for 56.9 percent of all important research in this field. The U.S., which ranks second, only accounts for 9.5 percent.
Learn more of the latest news coming out of China, including its tech breakthroughs, at CommunistChina.news.
Watch Newsmax's Carl Higbie speculating whether the Chinese have developed the technology necessary to successfully hack into an F-35 fighter jet below.