China Conducts First Launch of 2013

Long March 2D Credit : RIA Novosti

Long March 2D
Credit : RIA Novosti

On Friday, China conducted its first space launch of the year when a Long March 2D rocket lifted off from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center. The primary payload was the Gaofen-1 remote sensing satellite, the first of a fleet of six such spacecraft China plans to launch before 2016. Also aboard were three smaller satellites hailing from Ecuador, Argentina and Turkey.

Friday’s launch of the storable propellant, two stage rocket was 18th successful mission in a row for the Long March 2D, adding to a 100% mission success record.

Posted in: Chinese space

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2 Comments on "China Conducts First Launch of 2013"

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  1. Dick Eagleson says:

    I am struck by the fact that China’s first space launch of the year occurs when said year is almost 1/3 gone. The launch is described as the first of six that will be done over a four year span. As a point of comparison this is half the launch rate that SpaceX has scheduled simply to satisfy its ISS resupply contract, never mind the rest of their considerable manifest for the same interval. The leisurely pace of China’s manned space missions has been much commented upon elsewhere but it seems that no obvious urgency attends their unmanned projects either. I fail to see why certain folks are so convinced that China poses some imminent threat of space domination.

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