China has launched three new space missions in recent weeks, launching the country’s first rocket to be equipped with fixed rocket launchers and bringing in satellites to capture earth and calibrate orbit forecast features, according to China state news.
A new version of China’s Long March family rocket, the Long March 6A, was launched for the first time on March 29 with two satellites. Long March 6A is China’s first satellite broadcast to feature fixed rocket launchers, a standard set -up routinely used in the US, Europe, and Japan.
The new rocket type is designed to pull cargo up to 4 metric tons, or 8,800 pounds, in a polar-synchronous solar orbit at an altitude of 700 kilometers, or 435 miles.
The first Long March 6A was released at 0950 GMT (5:50 am EDT) on March 29 from the Taiyuan base, located in Shanxi province of northern China. It was released at 5:50 pm Beijing time.
The 164-foot (50-meter) high rock travels south to put its two orbits into a polar orbit. U.S. military surveillance data showed on Long March 6A that it placed two satellites in orbit about 373 miles (600 kilometers) above Earth, or 97.8 degrees Celsius. equator, according to publicly available U.S. military record data.
The Long March 6A is a modified version of China’s Long March 6 booster, flying without boosters. The Long March 6A began a first-stage design, adding a large YF-100 engine that used crude oil. With four boosters and two large engines, the Long March 6A produces more than 1.6 million pounds of lifting release.
The 6 standard long-range rocket system flies with a single YF-100 engine. Chinese engineers have also introduced a wide double-decker for the Long March 6A, providing new accelerators for the second-tier YF-115 engine.
The ability to take off even more and fire more gives the Long March 6A the ability to boost pay by about four times that of the Long March 6 rocket.
China Aerospace Science and Technology Corp., or CASC, announced the success of the launch in a statement. CASC is China’s largest aerospace contractor, and oversees the Shanghai Academy of Spaceflight Technology, or SAST, which built the Long March 6 and Long March 6A rocket families.
The Long March 6A rocket took over the Pujiang 2 and Tiankun 2 satellites, CASC said.
Pujiang 2, developed by SAST, will “do science and research, land and resources and other activities,” according to China’s state -run Xinhua news agency. After the launch of the Pujiang 1 ice -cold satellite in 2015, a mission planned to promote the development of a “smart city” in China by looking at the sky. , travel, and crowds.
Tiankun 2 will feature a small aircraft carrier developed by China Aerospace Science and Industry Corp. It will follow a small aircraft called the Tiankun 1 which was launched in 2017.
A launch of the Chinese rocket on March 30 took three small satellites into orbit on a mission to observe the “space environment” and supported “orbital prediction modeling,” the government said. China.
Tianping satellites 2A, 2B, and 2C were launched from Jiuquan Central Station on a Long March 11 rocket at 0229 GMT on March 30 (10:29 pm EDT on March 29). CASC reported that the fourth Long March 11 rocket had launched its payloads into planned orbit, following the launch at 10:29 am Beijing time.
The solid rock flew Long March 11 south from Jiuquan to put the Tianping 2 satellites into a polar orbit. U.S. military orbit data showed the satellites were stationed at an altitude of about 370 miles (600 kilometers) in orbit at 97.8 degrees to the equator.
The launch marks the 12th flight of a Long March 11 rocket since 2015. The Long March 11 flight history has seen two launches from a seabed. The long -distance tours of March 11 have been successful to this day.
Chinese officials have revealed some details about the Tianping 2 satellites, but they could act as a passive target to help calibrate orbit tracking sensors. China has launched two Tianping 1 satellites, which officials have described as spacecraft calibration, on a Long March 2D rocket in 2018.
A third spacecraft of Long March 4C was launched on April 6 with a radar satellite to join Chinese fleets of orbiting environmental watchtowers.
The Gaofen satellite 3-03 was launched on a Long March 4C rocket at 2347 GMT (7:47 pm EDT) on 6 April. .
The Long March 4C placed the Gaofen 3-03 satellite in orbit at an altitude of about 460 miles (740 kilometers) and an average of 98.4 degrees.
Gaofen 3-03 joins two similar Gaofen 3-class satellites established by China in 2016 and last November.
The Gaofen 3-03 satellite will take high-resolution images of the Earth from its position in orbit. It carries a C -band synthetic aperture radar, which weighs nearly 3 metric tons – about 6,500 pounds – and should help Chinese officials better respond to natural disasters such as earthquakes and floods. .
The new satellite will focus on collecting images day and night, regardless of the weather. The constant ability of the radar to give officers more information if no arrows or rain is obstructing the view of the motion pictures.
CASC previously said the C-band radar on Gaofen 3 satellites could gather information to meet the needs of marine environment monitoring, emergency response, water conservation, weather monitoring, and more. the farm.
Gaofen satellites are part of the China High-resolution Earth Observation System, or CHEOS, a network of sensors and radars that observe the environment. China has launched more than 40 satellites under the Gaofen name since 2013.
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