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China launches communications satellite
Posted: Mon, Sep 19, 2011, 6:18 AM ET (1018 GMT)
Long March 3B launch of Chinasat-1A (Xinhua) A Long March rocket launched a Chinese communications satellite on Monday in the first Chinese launch since an August launch failure. The Long March 3B lifted off from the Xichang Satellite Launch Center at 12:33 pm EDT Sunday (1633 GMT Sunday, 12:33 am Beijing time Monday) and placed the Zhongxing-1A (Chinasat-1A) satellite into a geosynchronous transfer orbit. The 5,200-kilogram satellite, according to official Chinese media, will be used to provide voice, broadcast, and data services for users across China, although Western observers believe the satellite will be used for military communications. The launch was the first by China since a smaller Long March 2C failed to place an experimental satellite into orbit a month earlier.
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