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China - NON-MILITARY space activities & Space Industry

China launches new remote sensing satellite​

Source: Xinhua
Editor: huaxia
2023-09-10 13:59:30

TAIYUAN, Sept. 10 (Xinhua) -- China on Sunday successfully launched a new remote sensing satellite from the Taiyuan Satellite Launch Center in north China's Shanxi Province.

A modified version of the Long March-6 carrier rocket carrying the satellite Yaogan-40 lifted off at 12:30 p.m. (Beijing Time).

The satellite has entered the preset orbit. It will be used for electromagnetic environment detection and related technical tests.

Sunday's launch was the 487th mission undertaken by the Long March rocket series.



China's Tianzhou-5 cargo spacecraft separates from space station combination​

Source: Xinhua
Editor: huaxia
2023-09-11 19:39:00

BEIJING, Sept. 11 (Xinhua) -- After completing all assigned tasks, the Tianzhou-5 cargo spacecraft separated from the space station combination at 4:46 p.m. Monday (Beijing Time) and switched to independent flight, according to the China Manned Space Agency (CMSA).

The cargo craft will re-enter the atmosphere under control on Tuesday. Most of its components will be burned up and destroyed during the process, while a small amount of debris will fall into designated safe waters in the South Pacific, the CMSA said.

Tianzhou-5 was launched into orbit on Nov. 12, 2022 from the Wenchang Spacecraft Launch Site in the southern island province of Hainan.

The cargo craft delivered supplies for the three astronauts of the Shenzhou-15 mission to stay in orbit for six months. It also sent propellant and experiment facilities, including the Macao Student Science Satellite 1, space hydrogen-oxygen fuel cells, and space high-energy particle detection payloads.

During its orbital flight, it separated from the space station combination on May 5, re-docked with the space station after a 33-day independent flight, and continued to carry out space technology experiments.

Tianzhou-5 Cargo Spacecraft Separates from Space Station Combination​


China launches Yaogan-39 remote sensing satellite​

Source: Xinhua
Editor: huaxia
2023-09-17 14:13:30

XICHANG, Sept. 17 (Xinhua) -- China on Sunday successfully launched a new remote sensing satellite from the Xichang Satellite Launch Center in southwest China's Sichuan Province.

A Long March-2D carrier rocket carrying the satellite Yaogan-39 lifted off at 12:13 p.m. (Beijing Time).

Sunday's launch was the 488th mission undertaken by the Long March rocket series.



China builds new radio telescope to support lunar, deep-space missions​

Source: Xinhua
Editor: huaxia
2023-09-16 21:51:00

LHASA, Sept. 16 (Xinhua) -- China launched the construction of a 40-meter-aperture radio telescope in Shigatse, southwest China's Tibet Autonomous Region, on Friday, to offer technical support for the country's lunar and deep-space probe missions in the future.

The telescope, developed by Shanghai Astronomical Observatory (SHAO) under the Chinese Academy of Sciences, will be added to a very-long-baseline interferometry (VLBI) network in China.

VLBI is a technique that measures the time difference between the arrivals at multiple Earth-based antennas, thus simulating a virtual telescope with a size equal to the maximum separation between the telescopes.

The current VLBI network in China comprises four observatories across the country, located in Beijing, Shanghai, Urumqi and Kunming.

The inclusion of Shigatse's telescope, as well as another one to be built in northeastern China, will effectively strengthen the network's observation capability. It will be capable of rendering accurate measurements for two spacecraft at once, said Shen Zhiqiang, SHAO's director.

The telescope under construction is a large, fully movable, high-precision multipurpose radio telescope. The Shigatse station, at an elevation of about 4,100 meters, provides an excellent observation environment for the telescope.

It is also expected to facilitate more scientific findings in the fields of supermassive black holes and the dynamics of our galaxy, according to Shen.

Launch of Jilin-1 Gaofen-04 B satellite fails​

Source: Xinhua
Editor: huaxia
2023-09-21 20:22:16

JIUQUAN, Sept. 21 (Xinhua) -- The launch of the Jilin-1 Gaofen-04 B satellite, carried by a CERES-1 private commercial carrier rocket, was unsuccessful.

Abnormal performance was detected during the flight of the rocket, which lifted off from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in northwest China at 12: 59 p.m. (Beijing Time) on Thursday.

The cause of the failure is under investigation.

China launches its latest remote sensing satellite​

Source: Xinhua
Editor: huaxia
2023-09-27 07:58:45

JIUQUAN, Sept. 27 (Xinhua) -- China on Wednesday sent its latest remote sensing satellite into space from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in northwest China.

The satellite, Yaogan-33 04, was launched on a Long March-4C carrier rocket at 4:15 a.m. (Beijing Time), and has entered its planned orbit successfully.

It will be used for scientific experiments, land resource surveys, crop yield estimates, and disaster prevention and relief work.

The launch was the 489th flight mission of the Long March carrier rocket series.



China to launch next lunar probe around 2024​

Source: Xinhua
Editor: huaxia
2023-09-29 15:30:30

BEIJING, Sept. 29 (Xinhua) -- China's next lunar probe Chang'e-6 will be launched around 2024 as planned, with related development tasks currently in progress, the China National Space Administration (CNSA) said Friday.

According to the country's lunar exploration program, the Chang'e-6 mission will collect samples from the far side of the moon. It aims to land in the South Pole-Aitken Basin on the far side to explore and collect lunar samples from different regions and ages.

To support the communications between the moon's far side and the Earth, China plans to launch its newly developed relay satellite Queqiao-2, or Magpie Bridge-2, in the first half of 2024, the CNSA said.

It noted that the Chang'e-6 lunar probe will carry payloads from France, Italy, Pakistan and the European Space Agency, which include a negative ion detector and a radon gas detector.


China’s Shenzhou-16 Manned Space Mission Reaches Fourth-Month Mark​

The three Shenzhou-16 astronauts have spent four months aboard China's Tiangong space station, successfully completing a series of in-orbit tests and experiments as planned, the China Manned Space Agency (CMSA) said on Saturday.


China launches new remote sensing satellite​

Source: Xinhua
Editor: huaxia
2023-10-05 10:02:00

XICHANG, Oct. 5 (Xinhua) -- China on Thursday successfully launched a new remote sensing satellite into space from the Xichang Satellite Launch Center in southwest China's Sichuan Province.

A Long March-2D carrier rocket carrying the satellite Yaogan-39 lifted off at 8:24 a.m. (Beijing Time).

The launch was the 490th mission undertaken by the Long March rocket series.


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China's gigantic telescope detects new fast radio burst from space​

Source: Xinhua
Editor: huaxia
2023-10-10 16:51:00

GUIYANG, Oct. 10 (Xinhua) -- Chinese scientists have detected a new fast radio burst (FRB) from elsewhere in the universe with the help of the world's largest radio telescope.

FRBs are mysterious radio flashes lasting only a few thousandths of a second that were confirmed in 2016 to originate from the cosmos. There is still no explanation for their origins.

Using the Five-hundred-meter Aperture Spherical Radio Telescope (FAST), located in southwest China's Guizhou Province, a local research team found the faint radio signal, namely FRB 20200317A, after an analysis of the massive survey data of FAST, and reported the discovery in late September to the international astronomical community through the Astronomer's Telegram.

Multiple national outlets reposted the news this week, highlighting that the discoverers are from a local key laboratory of information and computing science under the Guizhou Normal University. Previous findings were mainly done by National Astronomical Observatories, the operator of the mega-science facility.

FAST is the world's largest single-dish radio telescope, with a reception area equal to 30 standard football fields. Sited in a naturally deep and round karst depression, it officially began operating on Jan. 11, 2020.

Since then, it has embarked on the FRB detection and captured the first four non-repeating FRBs in 2020.

According to scientists, more FRB discoveries could provide insights into a wide range of astrophysical problems.

China launches one more Earth-observing satellite​

Source: Xinhua
Editor: huaxia
2023-10-15 09:58:30

JIUQUAN, Oct. 15 (Xinhua) -- China on Sunday launched a Long March-2D rocket placing a new Earth-observing satellite into space.

Coded Yunhai-1 04, the satellite was lifted at 8: 54 a.m. (Beijing Time) from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in northwest China and soon entered the preset orbit.

It will provide services for the detection of the atmospheric, marine and space environments, disaster prevention and mitigation, and scientific experiments.

The launch marked the 491st mission for the Long March rocket family, said the launch center.


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Feature: China publishes picture book marking 20th anniversary of its first manned spaceflight​

Source: Xinhua
Editor: huaxia
2023-10-15 16:52:00

BEIJING, Oct. 15 (Xinhua) -- Authorized by Yang Liwei, China's first astronaut to enter space, the Beijing Science and Technology Press (BSTP) published the picture book "First Man" on Sunday, marking the 20th anniversary of the country's first manned space travel.

The book relives the whole process of Yang's historic flight in October 2003, including the liftoff, in-orbit flight and return to Earth of the Shenzhou-5 spaceship, using vivid pictures.

This book is an opportunity for science publishers to introduce the story of Yang Liwei and the Shenzhou-5 mission to readers, allowing them to get to know the Chinese space hero better.

The content of the picture book is based on Yang's autobiography, "Long March to Space," which was published in 2010. Part of the book's content was included in the country's middle school textbook in 2021, which soon became a trending topic on social media networks.

"My department director asked me to do some research about the book. So I bought the autobiography and was moved by the detailed stories in it. Thus, I decided to turn it into a picture book," said Wu Xiaoxi, editor of the BSTP.

Her idea won support from Yang, who later accepted an interview with a BSTP editorial team for the new picture book.

"When I was a student, I learned about Yang from the news and thought he was great and admirable," said Wu. But it was just an abstract feeling, Wu added.

After reading his autobiography, Wu realized that Yang remained as real and interesting as an ordinary person.

"When I talked with him face to face, I found that he was exactly the same as depicted in the autobiography, with active and clear thinking, while also being broad-minded, tenacious and fearless," Wu said.

Jin Xing, illustrator of the picture book, also secured a fresher and clearer impression of the country's first space traveller.

After Shenzhou-5 re-entered the atmosphere, Yang saw what he believed were cracks in the portholes, and the temperature outside was between 1,600 and 1,800 degrees Celsius. Once back on Earth, he found out that it was the anti-burning coating covering the portholes instead of the windows that had burned and cracked.

"I have repeatedly imagined those thrilling moments in my mind, amazed at how hard this space journey was and how marvelous the astronaut was," Jin said.

When Jin submitted the sketch paper, Wu was touched by the pictures illustrating Yang's actions in orbit, such as stretching out his hand as if to touch the floating dust and waving goodbye to the quiet immensity of space.

Twenty years after the space mission, Yang reviewed the development of China's manned spaceflight in the afterword of this picture book.

The country's manned spaceflight missions have been lengthened from one day to multiple days, and are performed simultaneously by multiple astronauts and not just one, which reflects the rapid development of China's space technology.

"Every astronaut and every aerospace worker is proud of this spirit of continuous innovation and pursuit of perfection," Yang said.

Yang has not conducted another flight mission since 2003. In the afterword of the picture book, he said that he has gradually changed from a trainee to an instructor and administrator, but he still insists on participating in spaceflight mission training as a professional astronaut.

"What remains unchanged is that I still keep the original aspiration of an astronaut, and always stay ready to be selected by the motherland," he said.

Besides, Yang often attends science popularization events. "The space lectures from the Tiangong space station, favored by many students, was initiated by him," said Wu.

Yang said in the afterword that science popularization is missioned to light up children's curiosity and to stimulate them to explore science and the unknown.

Hoping the new picture book will prove a good science popularization work, Wu and her colleagues reminded readers that there is a surprise in the book -- a page showing a rabbit staring at the moon.

"We are all looking forward to the next leap of China's manned space program -- the manned lunar landing," said Wu. "We expect to produce more high-quality picture books at that time," Wu added.


Next-generation rocket for nation's manned space missions on track​

By ZHAO LEI | CHINA DAILY | Updated: 2023-10-17 07:29

China's next-generation rocket to carry astronauts is expected to be ready for its maiden flight around 2027, according to a leader on the project.

Zhang Zhi, a senior rocket designer at the China Academy of Launch Vehicle Technology, said on Monday that research and development on the new rocket model, named Long March 10, has been progressing based on the project schedule at the Beijing-based academy, the major rocket maker in the nation and a subsidiary of China Aerospace Science and Technology Corp.

"The Long March 10 will be a brand new type of launch vehicle and will be tasked with launching the country's new-generation crewed spacecraft and the lunar landing module," he said. "It will feature a high level of reliability and operational safety."

Zhang said the moon-mission rocket will consist of a core booster and several side boosters and will be 92 meters tall, which is roughly the height of a 32-story residential building. The gigantic vehicle will have a liftoff weight of 2,187 metric tons and a thrust of 2,678 tons.

It will be capable of transporting spacecraft weighing at least 27 tons to an Earth-moon transfer trajectory, he added.

All necessary conditions for the rocket's first launch mission will be ready in 2027, he said.

"The Long March 10 will also have a variant that will not have side boosters. It will be used to transport astronauts or cargo with a combined weight of 14 tons to the Tiangong space station in low-Earth orbit," said Zhang.

He was speaking at an activity in Beijing hosted by the National Work Committee of the Chinese Young Pioneers. The event invited distinguished figures in China's manned spaceflight program such as Yang Liwei, the first Chinese person in space, to meet young students to share their spaceflight stories.

China's roadmap for its first manned lunar expedition involves two Long March 10 launches from the Wenchang Space Launch Center in Hainan province to transport a landing module and a manned spacecraft to lunar orbit.

After reaching their preset orbital positions, the landing module and the spacecraft carrying astronauts will rendezvous and dock with each other. Two crew members will enter the landing module, which will then undock and descend toward the lunar surface for an engine-assisted soft landing.

On the moon, the astronauts will drive a rover to carry out scientific tasks and collect samples. Upon completion of their assignments, they will return to the landing module, which will fly them back to their spaceship waiting in lunar orbit.

In the final stage, the astronauts will carry the samples into their spacecraft, which will then undock and carry the crew back to Earth.

China has carried out five robotic missions to the moon. It has deployed two rovers on the celestial body and has retrieved samples through the most recent Chang'e 5 mission.

China prepares to launch Shenzhou-17 crewed spaceship​

Source: Xinhua
Editor: huaxia
2023-10-19 12:42:45

JIUQUAN, Oct. 19 (Xinhua) -- The combination of the Shenzhou-17 crewed spaceship and a Long March-2F carrier rocket was transferred to the launching area on Thursday, the China Manned Space Agency (CMSA) said.

According to the CMSA, the facilities and equipment at the launch site are in good condition, and various pre-launch function checks and joint tests will be carried out as planned. The spaceship will be launched at an appropriate time in the near future.

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