China successfully launched a new navigation satellite on Saturday. The launch of Beidou-3G2Q took place from the LC3 Launch Complex of the Xichang Satellite Launch Center, Sichuan province, using a Long March-3B/G2 (Chang Zheng-3B/G2) launch vehicle. Launch time was 14:41 UTC.
Also designated Beidou-44, the satellite is part of the GEO component of the 3rd phase of the Chinese Beidou (Compass) satellite navigation system, using both geostationary satellites and satellites in intermediate orbits.
The satellites are based on the DFH-3B Bus. This bus has a payload increased to 450 kg and payload power to 4,000 W. They feature a phased array antenna for navigation signals and a laser retroreflector and additionally deployable S/L-band and C-band antennas. With a launch mass of 4,600 kg, spacecraft dimensions are noted to be 2.25 by 1.0 by 1.22 meters.
Previous Beidou satellites were orbited on November 18, 2018, with a Long March-3B/YZ-1 launch vehicle launching the Beidou-3M17 (Beidou-42) and Beidou-3M18 (Beidou-43) satellites from Xicheng.
The Beidou Navigation Satellite System (BDS) has been independently constructed, developed and operated by China taking into account the needs of the country’s national security, economic and social development. As a space infrastructure of national significance, BDS provides all-time, all-weather ...