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China successfully launches its largest carrier rocket
   2016-11-03 20:44:44    CRIENGLISH.com      Web Editor: Guo Jing

The Long March-5 starts its first space trip on Thursday night. [Photo: CRIENGLISH.com/Qiao Quanxing]

China has successfully launched its largest carrier rocket, the Long March-5, in south China on Thursday night.

The launch of the rocket marks a new step forward under China's space plans, which include probes on the Moon and Mars, as well as building its own manned space station.

The rocket is 50 percent larger than other members in the Long March rocket family, while its carrying capacity is 2.5 times of those of others.

The rocket arrived at the Wenchang launch center in south China's Hainan Province in September for final assembly and testing.

China's space plans after the Long March-5:

2017:
- Launch a cargo spaceship
- Start the Chang'e-5 moon probe

2018:
- Land a lunar probe on the far side or the dark side of the moon

2020:
-Launch a Mars probe
-Build a manned space station

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