China simply despatched three extra reconnaissance satellites to orbit.
A Lengthy March 2D rocket lifted off from Xichang Satellite tv for pc Launch Middle in southern China on Friday (Oct. 14) at 3:12 p.m. EDT (1912 GMT; 3:12 a.m. on Oct. 15 Beijing time).
The rocket apparently carried three satellites in China’s Yaogan 36 sequence. The spacecraft have been efficiently deployed into their designated orbit, based on Chinese language media stories (opens in new tab).
Associated: The most recent information about China’s area program
It is unclear precisely what the newly launched trio will do; China reveals few particulars concerning the Yaogan satellites, whose title interprets as “distant sensing.”
Chinese language state media have mentioned that the spacecraft collect scientific information, serving to researchers conduct land surveys and monitor agriculture manufacturing, amongst different duties. Nonetheless, Western specialists imagine that Yaogan satellites additionally accumulate imagery to be used by the Chinese language army.
There’s more likely to be appreciable variety in Yaogan job descriptions; China has launched dozens of the spacecraft over the previous few years, together with 20 since March alone.
The Yaogan 36 launch was a part of a busy day in spaceflight. Additionally on Friday, SpaceX’s Crew-4 astronaut mission got here house from the Worldwide Area Station after a 5.5-month orbital keep.
And a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket is scheduled to loft a communications satellite tv for pc for the European firm Eutelsat on Friday evening at 11:26 p.m. EDT (0326 GMT on Oct. 15). You possibly can watch that liftoff dwell right here at Area.com when the time comes, courtesy of SpaceX.
As well as, Russia was anticipated to launch a mysterious army satellite tv for pc referred to as EMKA-3 on Friday afternoon. That apparently did not occur, nevertheless; EMKA-3 now could go up over the weekend.
Mike Wall is the creator of “Out There (opens in new tab)” (Grand Central Publishing, 2018; illustrated by Karl Tate), a ebook concerning the seek for alien life. Comply with him on Twitter @michaeldwall (opens in new tab). Comply with us on Twitter @Spacedotcom (opens in new tab) or on Fb (opens in new tab).