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Kuaizhou 1A rocket launched into orbit

By ZHAO LEI | chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2023-08-14 17:25

A Kuaizhou 1A carrier rocket lifts off from the Xichang Satellite Launch Center in Southwest China's Sichuan province on Aug 14, 2023. [Photo/People's Daily Weibo account]

China launched a Kuaizhou 1A carrier rocket on Monday afternoon at the Xichang Satellite Launch Center in Sichuan province, placing five communication satellites in space, according to the China Aerospace Science and Industry Corp.

The State-owned space contractor said in a news release that the solid-propellant rocket blasted off at 1:32 pm from its launch vehicle and soon deployed the Head Aerospace 3A, 3B, 3C, 3D and 3E satellites into their preset orbits. The mission marked the 22nd flight of the Kuaizhou 1A model and the rocket's fourth launch this year.

Developed by Head Aerospace Technology, a private satellite maker in Beijing, the satellites are tasked with obtaining and transmitting data for shipping and other maritime industries.

Built by China Space Sanjiang Group in Hubei province, a CASIC subsidiary, the 20-meter Kuaizhou 1A rocket has a liftoff weight of about 30 metric tons. It is capable of carrying a payload weighing up to 200 kilograms to a sun-synchronous orbit, or a payload weighing up to 300 kg to a low-Earth orbit, according to designers.

The Kuaizhou 1A and Kuaizhou 11, a larger type, are the most used solid-propellant rockets in China. They are easy to prepare for launch, highly reliable, efficient, and are low cost, designers said.

Monday's space mission was China's 36th rocket launch this year.

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