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China releases 3 military spy satellites

China releases 3 military spy satellites
If you would like to see more articles like this please support our coverage of the space program by becoming a Spaceflight Now Member. If everyone who enjoys our website helps fund it, we can expand and improve our coverage further. A Long March 2C rocket takes off Monday from the Xichang launch base in…

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A Long March 2C rocket removes Monday from the Xichang launch base in China. Credit: Xinhua

3 strange payloads extensively believed to be signals intelligence satellites for the Chinese military soared into orbit on top of a Long March 2C booster Monday from a launch base in southwestern China.

The 3 Yaogan 30- type satellites lifted off aboard the Long March 2C rocket at 11: 19 a.m. EDT (1519 GMT) Monday from the Xichang space center in the Sichuan province of southwestern China. Liftoff occurred at 11: 19 p.m. Beijing time, according to China’s state-run Xinhua news firm.

The China Academy of Release Vehicle Innovation, or CALT, stated the objective a “complete success” in a declaration. CALT is the government-owned specialist that produced the Long March 2C rocket.

The two-stage Long March 2C rocket, fueled by liquid hydrazine and nitrogen tetroxide propellants, provided the 3 Yaogan 30 satellites to a 370- mile-high (595- kilometer) orbit inclined 35 degrees to the equator, according to U.S. military tracking information.

The satellites are the seventh triplet of Yaogan 30- type spacecraft because 2017 introduced on Long March 2C rockets from the Xichang facility into comparable orbits. The three Yaogan 30-07 satellites launched Monday are created for remote noticing of the “electro-magnetic environment” from their orbit 370 miles above Earth, Xinhua said.

The Chinese government uses the Yaogan name for the country’s military satellites, and the Yaogan 30 family is thought to be designed for a signals intelligence objective.

Some experts recommended the Yaogan 30 family of satellites might be testing new electronic eavesdropping equipment, or assisting the Chinese military track U.S. and other foreign naval implementations. Details about the spacecraft and their objectives have actually not been divulged by the Chinese federal government.

A 4th payload rode to area on the Long March 2C rocket Monday. The small satellite, named Tianqi 6, was launched for the Beijing-based company Guodian Gaoke on an objective to offer commercial data relay services.

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Follow Stephen Clark on Twitter: @StephenClark1


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