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China successfully launched prototype reusable space launch vehicle

Asia / Digest

As of today, "Long March 8" remains a single-use carrier, but in future modifications it will be equipped with a reentry module.

China successfully launched prototype reusable space launch vehicle

China's new medium-sized launch vehicle, Changzheng-8 (Long March 8), made its maiden flight on Tuesday, sending five satellites into its planned orbit. About this reported China National Space Administration (CNSA).

About 15 minutes later, the rocket entered a sun-synchronous orbit 512 kilometers high, and then deployed the experimental New Technology Demonstrator 7 satellite and four small private satellites.

The missile is expected to become the first reusable model in the Long March series in the future.

The designers intend to upgrade the first stage of the future reusable version of the rocket. This new first stage will consist of a main booster and two side boosters. Instead of collapsing and crashing back to Earth, as the first stages of all existing Chinese rockets do, the new core and lateral boosters will stick together and land altogether on a rescue platform at sea.

The most famous reusable rocket in the world is SpaceX's Falcon Heavy, which first launched in February 2018. All the boosters on the first stage of the American rocket can be rebuilt and reused.

Xiao Yun, Project Manager for the Long March 8, said the successful maiden flight of the rocket is a new advance in China's efforts to modernize its medium-lift booster system and push the country towards a world-class space power.

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