News By/Courtesy: ANSHIKA JAIN | 08 Sep 2020 11:12am IST

HIGHLIGHTS

  • China successfully launched a reusable experimental spacecraft
  • Spacecraft to return to predetermined landing site after a period of in-orbit operation
  • Mission details kept secret

According to media reports, on 4 September 2020, China successfully launched a reusable experimental spacecraft. The mission details of the spacecraft have however been kept confidential. 

The state-run Xinhua news agency reported that the spacecraft was launched on a Long March-2F carrier rocket from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Centre in northwest China.

The spacecraft will return to a predetermined landing site in China after a period of in-orbit operation. During its flight, the spacecraft will test reusable technologies thereby providing technological support for the peaceful use of space.

The South China Morning Post based in Hong Kong reported that the space mission has been shrouded in secrecy. The Post quoted an official memo being circulated on social media and mentioned that the visitors and staffers at the launch site have been warned against filming the lift-off. They have also been warned against discussing the launch of the spacecraft online.

The document being circulated online also highlights that all units should strengthen personnel management and personnel security education during missions so as to ensure that there is no secret that is being leaked.

A Chinese military source mentioned that there are numerous firsts in this launch and thereby there is extra security. The spacecraft is new as well as the launch method is different. The military official declined to answer about the spacecraft and the details of the mission but suggested taking a look at the US X-37B.

The X-37B is an unmanned spacecraft that is launched by a rocket and cruises back to earth for a runway landing. The X-37B operates as a smaller version of the Space Shuttle. The spacecraft has carried secret payloads on long-duration flights in Earth’s orbit and has flown four missions to date.

In July, China launched Tianwen-1, its first mission to Mars. Weeks after that, on 4 September 2020, China launched the reusable spacecraft mission.

The China National Space Administration mentioned that its spacecraft including an orbiter, rover, and lander has been performing well on its way to Mars.

A month prior to that, China successfully completed the network of satellites for its BeiDou navigation network.
        

This article does not intend to hurt the sentiments of any individual, community, sect, or religion, etcetera. This article is based purely on the author’s personal opinion and views in the exercise of the Fundamental Rights guaranteed under Article 19(1)(A) and other related laws being enforced in India for the time being.

Section Editor: Pushpit Singh | 09 Sep 2020 0:23am IST


Tags : #ReusableExperimentalSpacecraft #MissionKeptSecret #PredeterminedLanding

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