China sends Long March 6A on maiden flight

By Zhao Lei | | Updated: 2022-03-29 19:07
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A Long March 6A carrier rocket carrying satellites blasts off from the Taiyuan Satellite Launch Center in North China's Shanxi province, March 29, 2022. [Photo by Zheng Taotao/Provided to]

Despite being called Long March 6A, the new model will be very different from Long March 6, also designed and built by the Shanghai academy.

Long March 6 is about 30 meters tall and weighs 102 tons, much smaller and lighter than the new model. It was first launched in September 2015 and has fulfilled six flights.

Hong Gang, the rocket's project manager at the academy, said the Long March 6A is China's first rocket to use both liquid- and solid-propellant engines as its main propulsion.

The Pujiang 2, also made by the Shanghai academy, is tasked with carrying out in-orbit scientific tests and surveying land resources.

Developed and built by China Aerospace Science and Industry Corp, another State-owned contractor, the Tiankun 2 will be used to demonstrate and verify several advanced space technologies.

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