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China’s small solid-propellant Kaituozhe KT-2A launch vehicle puts technology test satellite into orbit for Chinese military (Corrected)

China’s small solid-propellant Kaituozhe KT-2A launch vehicle was launched from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Centre, China, at 2353 GMT on 2 March 2017. On board the flight was the Tiankong-1 spacecraft, which was built by the China Aerospace and Industry …

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Ren Xinmin – Chinese rocket and satellite designer passes away at 101

Chinese rocket and satellite designer Ren Xinmin has passed away at the age of 101. While Qian Xuesen is regarded as founder of the Chinese space programme, with benign support of Chairman Mao and Chinese Premier Chou Enlai, one of …

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China’s Long March 934 may beat SLS Block 2 to orbit and beats its minimum payload as well

While USA has decided to only proceed with the SLS block 1B for the time being, capable of lofting circa 100 metric tons to low Earth orbit (LEO), there is, of ocurse, the promise, of a Block 2 version to …

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China’s Kuaizhou 1A quick launch rocket puts three commercial satellites into orbit

The first launch of the “quick launch” Chinese Kuaizhou 1A (Feitian 1) launch vehicle took place from the Jiuquan launch centre in the Gobi Desert on 9 January at 0411 GMT. While the earlier Kuaizhou 1 incarnation of this rocket …

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Long March 3B successfully launches comsat for China

At 1518 GMT on 5 January 2017, a Long March 3B/G2 rocket took off from the Xichang launch site in China. Aboard was a mysterious satellite called TJS-2. The satellite was placed into a geosynchronous transfer orbit (GTO) on its …

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Long March 2D undershoots Gaojing Earth observation satellites and they have to recover themselves

At 0323 GMT on 28 December 2016, a Long March 2D/2 (CZ-2D/2) rocket lifted off from the Taiyuan launch site in China carrying two Gaojing 1 spacecraft, Gaojing 1-1 and Gaojing 1-2, into orbit – the first two in a …

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China launches carbon dioxide monitoring satellite

A Long March 2D/2 rocket lifted off from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center, China, at 1522 GMT, 21 December. The mission’s primary payload was the TANSAT, atmospheric carbon dioxide-monitoring minisatellite. Along with TANSAT there were reportedly three other payloads on-board, …

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China launches new Feng Yun 4A weather satellite on way to GEO

China has launched its newest Feng Yun series weather satellite, Feng Yun 4A, into orbit using a Long March 3B/G2 rocket flying from the Xichang launch base at 1642 GMT on 10 December 2016. The Feng Yun 4 series is …

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China launches its fourth Tianlian-1 data relay satellite

China has launched the fourth in its series of Tianlian-1 satellites which are used to relay communications from other spacecraft to ground stations. The launch of the Long March 3C carrying the Tianlian 1D (Tianlian 1-04) spacecraft occurred at 1524 …

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Two Chinese taikonauts return home safely after 30-day stay in orbit

The Shenzhou 11 Descent Module landed in the Inner Mongolia territory, in Northern China, at 0559 GMT on 18 November. The two taikonauts inside, Jing Haipeng and Chen Dong, were found to be in good health having already opened the …

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China launches Yunhai satellite for “atmospheric and scientific experiments”

Another satellite that China apparently describes as purely peaceful in purpose has been launched from the Jiuquan launch site by a Long March 2D/2 at 2314 GMT on 11 November 2016. The spacecraft, which is thought to be sized in …

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Long March 11 launches five satellites… as Myanmar is hit by spent stage

China has launched the second Long March 11 (CZ-11) all solid launch vehicle. The four stage solid rocket lifted off from the Jiuquan launch site in China at 2342 GMT on 10 November 2016.

The flight carried five small satellites. …

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China receives plaudits for maiden launch of its new Long March 5 rocket – but upper stage is then revealed as debris hazard

At 1243 GMT, on 2 November 2016, China carried out the maiden launch of the new Long March 5 (CZ-5), heavy-lift rocket, which has been under development by the China Academy of Launch Vehicle Technology (CALT) since 2001. The launch …

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Thaicom subisidiary buys new comsat from CGWIC in turnkey contract

The International Satellite Company, has, with funding from its parent company – the regional satellite operator Thaicom, made a formal construction order for a new communications satellite to the China Great Wall Industry Corp (CGWIC), the one-time Chinese commercial launch …

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Two taikonauts launched on way to Tiangong 2 mini-space station docking

At 2330 GMT on 16 October, two Taikonauts – three-time space-flier Jing Haipeng and space new boy Chen Dong – were launched into orbit aboard the Shenzhou 11 spacecraft by a Long March 2F/H (CZ-2F/H) rocket. The lift-off took place …

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China launches Tiangong-2 Spacelab module as precursor to full-sized space station

China has launched the Tiangong-2 “man tended” spacelab/mini-space station as a forerunner for its planned full-sized space station. The Long March 2F/T2 (CZ-2F/T2) launch of the mini-space station module took place at 14:04 GMT on 15 September 2016, from the …

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China’s Long March 4C rocket carrying Gaofen 10 suffers launch failure (Updated and revised)

China’s Long March 4C (CZ-4C) launch vehicle has suffered a launch failure. The three-stage rocket, which was launched at approximately 1853 GMT on 31 August 2016 from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Centre in China, was carrying the Gaofen 10 Earth …

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Spacecom set to be bought by Chinese conglomerate for US$285m

On 24 August, the major shareholders of the Israeli Fixed Service Satellite (FSS) operator, Spacecom (Space Communications), announced that they had agreed a deal that would see the company bought by Beijing Xinwei Technology Group, a large conglomerate based in …

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China launches new quantum communications satellite using Long March 2D

A Long March 2D/2 rocket successfully blasted off from the Jiuquan launch site in China on 15 August 2016 at 1740 GMT. Aboard the rocket were three spacecraft. The main payload was the QUESS (Quantum Experiment Scientific Satellite) which has …

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Gaofen 3 Earth Resources radar satellite is launched by China

The Gaofen 3 Earth resources radar satellite has been launched by China at 2255 GMT on 9 August 2016.  The satellite was sent into a Sun-synchronous low Earth orbit by a Long March 4C launch vehicle flying out of Taiyuan, …

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