2 Chinese Satellites Lofted on Back-to-back Launches

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China launched its second Fengyun-3 series weather satellite Nov. 4 atop a Long March 4C rocket, China’s state-run Xinhua news agency reported. The launch, which took place at the Taiyun Satellite Launch Center in China’s Shanxi province, marked the 13th successful mission this year for the Long March family of rockets.

The Fengyun-3 launch occurred just four days after a Long March 3C rocket lifted off Oct. 31 from the Xichang launch center in southwestern China’s Sichuan province carrying the nation’s latest Beidou/Compass navigation satellite into orbit.

China has launched six Beidou/Compass satellites to date, four this year alone, and plans to launch eight more by 2012 to achieve regional coverage for what eventually will grow to be a global system.