China Launches A Pair Of Navigation Satellites

The two satellites are part of China’s domestic BeiDou Navigation Satellite System, which will serve countries along the Belt and Road by the end of 2018.

AsianScientist (Apr. 3, 2018) – China has sent a pair of satellites into space using a single carrier rocket, adding two more members to its domestic BeiDou Navigation Satellite System (BDS). The satellites and the rocket were developed by the Innovation Academy for Microsatellites at the Chinese Academy of Sciences and China Academy of Launch Vehicle Technology, respectively.

The Long March-3B carrier rocket lifted off from Xichang Satellite Launch Center in southwest China’s Sichuan Province. The launch was the 269th mission for the Long March rocket family. The twin satellites carried by the rocket are coded as the 30th and 31st satellites in the BDS.

The satellites entered orbit more than three hours after the launch and will work together with six previously launched BeiDou-3 satellites once they pass a series of tests. Named after the Chinese term for the Big Dipper, the BeiDou system started providing independent services over China in 2000 and will serve countries along the Belt and Road by the end of 2018.


Source: Chinese Academy of Sciences; Photo: Shutterstock.
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