The BeiDou Navigation Satellite System (BDS) is a Chinese satellite navigation system. In 2015, China started the build-up of the third generation BeiDou system (BeiDou-3) in the global coverage constellation. The first BDS-3 satellite was launched on 30 March 2015. As of January 2018, nine BeiDou-3 satellites have been launched.BeiDou-3 will eventually consist of 35 satellites and is expected to provide global services upon completion in 2020.
China launched two more Beidou-3 satellites March 30, the seventh and eighth of the third phase of the Beidou system.
Launch via Long March 3B rocket took place at 01:56 Beijing time Friday (17:56 UTC Thursday) from the Xichang Satellite Launch Centre, reports gbtimes.com.
The satellites join six others orbiting at 21,000 kilometers above the Earth. BeiDou-3 is designed to expand Beidou navigation, positioning and timing services from regional to global coverage by 2020.
The satellites were inserted into medium Earth orbits by a Yuanzheng-1 upper stage more than three hours after launch, with CASC, China’s main aerospace contractor, then confirming success.
The satellites were developed by the Innovation Academy for Microsatellites at the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), while the China Academy of Launch Vehicle Technology (CALT) under CASC provided the Long March 3B launch vehicle.
On Monday (February 12th 2018) this week at 05:03 UTC, two new Beidou-3 Navigation Satellites have been successfully launched from Xichang Satellite Center in Sichuan Province (China) by using a Long March-3B launch vehicle with an Yuanzheng-1 (YZ-1) upper stage.
The Chinese Beidou system's 23rd satellite was launched into orbit Sunday aboard a Long March 3C rocket. The Long March 3C rocket lifted off at 1530 GMT (11:30 a.m. EDT) from the Xichang launch base in southwestern China's Sichuan province, according to the state-run Xinhua news agency.
This is the third new satellite to join the fleet this year. The 21st satellite was launched in February, and the 22nd in March. The satellite was deployed into an elliptical orbit more than 22,000 miles (35,700 kilometers) above Earth. It will power its way into a circular geosynchronous orbit over the equator in the coming weeks.
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