China Launches Satellite For a Short-Term Scientific Mission

Aug 29, 2004
Launch of Long March 2C (Aug 1992)

Space officials said on Sunday China launched a science experimental satellite. The satellite was launched atop a Long March 2C carrier rocket in the afternoon, Xinhua news agency said.

The satellite will remain in orbit for a few days and will carry out scientific experiments: land surveying, mapping and other.

Officials said this is the 19th recoverable science experimental satellite China has launched.

About Long March:

A series of Chinese launch vehicles, the most recent of which support China’s current unmanned and nascent manned space programs. Long March rockets are descendants of ballistic missiles developed by China in the 1960s following the breakdown of Sino-Soviet relations in June 1959. They fall into three generations.

Long March CZ-2C is a successful low-Earth-orbit rocket with a payload of about 2,800 kg, derived from the DF-5 ICBM, which formed the basis for future Long March launch vehicles. On October 6, 1992, on its 13th flight, the CZ-2C successfully launched the Swedish Freja satellite as a copassenger. On April 28, 1993, the Chinese Great Wall Industrial Corporation and Motorola signed a contract for multiple launch of Iridium satellites using the CZ-2C/SD, a 2C variant with a newly developed Smart Dispenser and improved second stage tanks and engines. The first deployment launches for the Iridium program (each carrying two satellites) went ahead successfully in 1997-98.

Image: Launch of Long March 2C (Aug 1992)

Explore further: SpaceX close to figuring out rocket failure during launch

Related Stories

Four decades of tracking European spacecraft

May 19, 2015

Forty years ago this week, a satellite ground station in Spain became the first to be assigned to what would become ESA. Since then, the network – Estrack – has expanded worldwide and today employs cutting-edge ...

Russia looks to space future after bruising failures

May 18, 2015

Russia's recent string of space failures—including the embarrassing loss of a satellite after the rocket carrying it fell to Earth—come as the country tries to restructure its ageing programme.

Recommended for you

What is the newest planet?

6 hours ago

With astronomers discovering new planets and other celestial objects all the time, you may be wondering what the newest planet to be discovered is. Well, that depends on your frame of reference. If we are ...

Catching Earth at aphelion

6 hours ago

Do you feel a little… distant today? The day after the 4th of July weekend brings with it the promise of barbecue leftovers and discount fireworks. It also sees our fair planet at aphelion, or its farthest ...

Opportunity's 7th Mars winter to include new study area

7 hours ago

Operators of NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity plan to drive the rover into a valley this month where Opportunity will be active through the long-lived rover's seventh Martian winter, examining outcrops ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.