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China carries out first sea-based satellite launch

07 June 2019
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China carried out its first-ever launch of a satellite from a sea-based mobile platform on 5 June. The event took place in the Yellow Sea using a Long March 11 rocket that carried seven satellites into orbit, some of which are for commercial use, while the others are for scientific data-gathering and communications development, according to China's state-owned Xinhua news agency.

China conducted its first-ever launch of a satellite from a sea-based mobile platform using a Long March 11 rocket on 5 June. (Xinhua)China conducted its first-ever launch of a satellite from a sea-based mobile platform using a Long March 11 rocket on 5 June. (Xinhua)

All of China's previous satellite launches had been conducted from one of the four satellite launch centres, located at latitudes between 19-49° north.

The latitude of the launch position in the Yellow Sea is reported to have been 34.9° north and 121.19° east, so it is likely to have been a demonstration of the viability of the sea-based platform. For the next launch, the platform will probably be positioned much further south to optimise the launch position in relation to the intended orbit of the satellites.

The first flight of a Long March 11 rocket took place in September 2015, with the most recent launch being the seventh overall.

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