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China launches its new Long March-6A Rocket

Updated: Mar 30, 2022

China's modified carrier rocket; Long March-6A Y1 (Chang Zheng-6A) launched two payloads Tiankun-2 and Pujiang-2 from Taiyuan SLC.

March 29, 2022: Today, At 17:50 local time (0950 UTC), China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC) launched the Long March 6A Y1 modified carrier rocket at the Taiyuan Satellite Launch Center, onboard with two satellites "Pujiang-2 and Tiankun-2" successfully entered the Low Earth Orbit, and the report says the launch mission was a complete success.

Long March-6A

The Long March-6A or Chang Zheng-6A(CZ-6A) modified carrier launch vehicle has an elongated cryogenic first stage, strapped with 4 solid motors compared to the CZ-6 (core only) and is equipped with a new second stage. The CZ-6A is capable of placing a payload of over 4 tons in a sun-synchronous orbit at an altitude > 670 km. Chang Zheng.6A is developed by the Shanghai Academy of Space Technology (SAST).

Note: this is the first Chinese rocket to use solid boosters.

The solid boosters are composed of two segments and have a diameter of 2.0 meters, providing a force of 1200 kN each. The first and second stages have a diameter of 3.35 meters. The first stage (core) is equipped with two YF-100 engines powered by kerosene and liquid oxygen, The Boosters and Core stage providing the liftoff thrust over 7,200 kN. The second stage is powered by one YF-115 uses kerosene/liquid oxygen with 180 kN.

The launcher stands 50 meters tall and a mass of 530 tons.

CZ-6A is currently supported to launch from Taiyuan Satellite Launch Center, the new launch complex at Taiyuan has been commissioned to support the new generation Launch Vehicles, The platform does not have a fixed umbilical turret and instead equipped with a vehicle erection launch mechanism.


CZ-6A Y1 mission patch

CASC placed two satellites in a 4.2 diameter fairing, aboard this inaugural launch of Chang Zheng-6A Y1 were Tiankun-2 and Pujiang-2.

The Tiankun-2 (天鲲二号) is an experimental space environment technology verification satellite, developed by the China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation.

The Pujiang-2 satellite (浦江二号) was developed by the Shanghai Academy of Space Technology. The satellite will be used for experimental scientific investigation, natural resource detection and ground sensing, and other tasks.

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