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Chang'e-1 Satellite Launch Delayed
    2007-03-15 13:56:33     CRIENGLISH.com
The launch of the first lunar satellite under China's Chang'e Program may be postponed to the second half of the year, the Beijing Times newspaper reports.

Dai Zhengliang, a senior official with the China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation, says the launch is likely to take place in September.

Zhang Yunchuan, the Minister of the Commission of Science, Technology and Industry for National Defense, has confirmed the information. The launch was originally scheduled in April but on Tuesday he announced the decision to delay the launch to a better time for sending a satellite into the moon's orbit.

He added that the preparations specified in the original plan are currently underway.

In 2003, China unveiled its lunar exploration program, named Chang'e after a legendary fairy who flew to the moon. The country plans to send a series of satellites and rovers to explore the moon.
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