Saturday, December 8, 2018

Long March 2D Launches SaudiSAT-5A/B and 10 Small Satellites into Orbit

A Long March-2D rocket carrying two satellites for Saudi Arabia blasts off from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in northwest China, Dec. 7, 2018. Credit: Xinhua/Hao Wei

China launched two satellites for Saudi Arabia on a Long March 2D rocket from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in northwest China at 12:12 p.m. Friday. The rocket also carried 10 small satellites.

The Piao Chong 1 to 6 (Ladybug 1 to 6), Tianyi X1 to X3 and Weina-1 03 satellites were ride companions of the two primary mission SaudiSAT-5 satellites.

Developed by KACST (King Abdulaziz City for Science & Technology), the SaudiSAT-5A and SaudiSAT-5B satellites are Earth observation and technological demonstration satellites from Saudi Arabia. The satellites are equipped with an optimized regional hyper-spectral observation system

Each SaudiSAT-5 weighs 425 kg. The two low orbit remote sensing satellites have a design life of five years. They are mainly used for achieving ground images.

The satellites have all entered the orbit.

The Long March 2D (LM-2D) launch vehicle is a two-stage rocket developed by the Shanghai Academy of Spaceflight Technology. With storable propellants is mainly used to launch a variety of low earth orbit satellites.

This was the 293rd mission of the Long March rocket series.

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