China-Brazil satellite fails to enter orbit (Update)

Dec 09, 2013
Brazilian researchers work inside a reinforced chamber on a CBERS satellite at the INPE headquarters, in Sao Jose dos Campos, some 90 km north of Sao Paulo, Brazil, on November 3, 2009

A joint Chinese-Brazilian environmental monitoring satellite launched Monday from northern China failed to enter orbit, state media and experts said, in a rare setback for the country's ambitious space programme.

The satellite, meant to be a key tool in Brazil's efforts to control Amazon rainforest deforestation and to monitor its huge agribusiness sector, blasted off from Taiyuan Satellite Launch Centre in Shanxi province on a Long March 4B rocket at 11:26am (0326 GMT), Xinhua said.

"The rocket malfunctioned during the flight and the satellite failed to enter orbit," the state news agency quoted military sources as saying.

The satellite is known as CBERS-3 (China-Brazil Earth Resources Satellite 3), or Ziyuan I-03 in Chinese. Ziyuan is the Chinese word for "resource".

In Brazil, the National Institute for Space Research (INPE) said in a statement that "there was a failure of the launcher during the flight and consequently the satellite was not positioned in the planned orbit".

"Preliminary evaluations suggest that the CBERS-3 returned to Earth."

The CBERS remote-sensing satellite programme grew out of a bilateral partnership agreement signed in 1988.

The satellite is based on the Chinese Ziyuan 1 design but includes Brazilian-designed mission payload.

Three satellites of the series were launched in 1999, 2003 and 2007 aboard Chinese-made Long March rockets.

CBERS-3 was originally scheduled to be launched in 2009, but the launch date was repeatedly postponed.

A CBERS-4 is scheduled to be launched in 2015.

China launched its first moon rover mission last week, the latest step in an ambitious space programme which is seen as a symbol of its rising global stature.

The rover—known as Yutu, or Jade Rabbit—is due to land on the moon in mid-December.

China sees its space programme as a symbol of its growing international status and technological advancement, as well as of the Communist Party's success in reversing the fortunes of the once impoverished nation.

It aims to establish a permanent space station by 2020 and eventually send a human to the moon.

Explore further: China moon rover enters lunar orbit

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

China moon rover enters lunar orbit

Dec 06, 2013

China's first lunar rover entered the moon's orbit on Friday, state media reported, a key step towards the vessel's planned landing later this month.

China launches Turkish satellite

Dec 18, 2012

China early Wednesday "successfully" launched a Turkish earth observation satellite into orbit aboard a Chinese rocket, according to state media, hailed in Turkey as a "historic moment".

Recommended for you

Cassini sees sunny seas on Titan

14 hours ago

(Phys.org) —As it soared past Saturn's large moon Titan recently, NASA's Cassini spacecraft caught a glimpse of bright sunlight reflecting off hydrocarbon seas.

Is space tourism safe or do civilians risk health effects?

17 hours ago

Several companies are developing spacecraft designed to take ordinary citizens, not astronauts, on short trips into space. "Space tourism" and short periods of weightlessness appear to be safe for most individuals ...

An unmanned rocket exploded. So what?

20 hours ago

Sputnik was launched more than 50 years ago. Since then we have seen missions launched to Mercury, Mars and to all the planets within the solar system. We have sent a dozen men to the moon and many more to ...

NASA image: Sunrise from the International Space Station

21 hours ago

NASA astronaut Reid Wiseman posted this image of a sunrise, captured from the International Space Station, to social media on Oct. 29, 2014. Wiseman wrote, "Not every day is easy. Yesterday was a tough one. ...

Copernicus operations secured until 2021

21 hours ago

In a landmark agreement for Europe's Copernicus programme, the European Commission and ESA have signed an Agreement of over €3 billion to manage and implement the Copernicus 'space component' between 2014 ...

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.