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China's commercial rocket Kuaizhou-1A launches three satellites in first mission
   2017-01-10 15:32:59    CRIENGLISH.com      Web Editor: Liu Yang

The rocket Kuaizhou-1A blasts off from Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in northwest China's Gansu Province, Jan. 9, 2017. [Photo: Xinhua/Wang Jiangbo]

Kuaizhou-1A, a Chinese commercial space launch vehicle, has carried out its first mission and sent three satellites into space from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center.

Kuaizhou-1A took off at 12:11 pm on January 9 Beijing time, carrying the Jilin-1 forestry satellite and two CubeSats, or small satellites, namely Xingyun Shiyan-1 and Kaidun-1.

Guo Zhonglai, deputy chief of the Planning Department of the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center, said unlike most traditional launches in which the satellites and rockets are from the same maker, Kuaizhou-1A and the satellites bear a contractual relationship.

The Kuaizhou series of rockets are manufactured by ExPace, a subsidiary of China Aerospace Science and Industry Corporation (CASIC).

The rocket Kuaizhou-1A blasts off from Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in northwest China's Gansu Province, Jan. 9, 2017. [Photo: Xinhua/Wang Jiangbo]

Founded in February 2016, ExPace is China's first commercial company that provides satellite launch services for both domestic and international clients.

As for the three satellites, Jilin-1, manufactured by Chang Guang Satellite Technology, is a remote-sensing satellite that can capture videos for forestry and environmental monitoring.

Xingyun Shiyan- 1, manufactured by the 9th Academy of CASIC, is used to test low Earth orbit narrow-band communication downlink technologies.

Kaidun-1, manufactured by Beijing Caton Global Technology Company, is designed to test the VHF Data Exchange System technology.

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