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October 31 – November 6, 2016 / Vol 35, No 44 / Hawai`i Island, USA

28 Oct 2016, 19:43 UTC
October 31 – November 6, 2016 / Vol 35, No 44 / Hawai`i Island, USA
(200 words excerpt, click title or image to see full post)

East Asia Blasts Off: Major Debut for China CZ-5 Rocket, Japan H-2A Going for 25th Straight Success

The maiden flight of China Long March 5 next-generation heavy-lift rocket is set to fully activate the new Wenchang Satellite Launch Center at Hainan Island on November 3. Among the most powerful in the world, this huge 3-stage orbital launch system will be capable of lifting 25,000 kg to LEO or 14,000 kg to GTO with 10,565 KN of thrust. In the 5B configuration it is designed to serve as a single-stage-to-orbit vehicle for payloads to LEO. The CZ-5 is also slated to boost the CNSA Chang’e-5 Lunar Sample Return mission toward the Moon in late 2017. Japan is set to notch up another success for its workhorse H-2A liquid fueled rocket on November 1 boosting the Himawari 9 weather satellite to GTO from Tanegashima Space Center. H-2A is rated to lift 10,000-15,000 kg to LEO or 4,100-6,000 kg to GTO. The JAXA Smart Lander for Investigating Moon (SLIM) mission is proposed to launch in late 2019 aboard the advanced cost-cutting Epsilon solid-fuel Rocket with payload capacity of 1,200 kg to LEO or 450 kg to SSO. Also progressing is the South Korea ...

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