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China to Develop New-generation Launch Vehicles: White Paper

Dec 29, 2011

China will develop new-generation launch vehicles, such as Long March-5, Long March-6 and Long March-7, in the next five years, a governmental white paper said Thursday.

The Long March-5 will use non-toxic and pollution-free propellant, and will be capable of placing 25 tonnes of payload into the near-Earth orbit, or placing 14 tonnes of pay-load into the GEO orbit, said the white paper "China's Space Activities in 2011" released by the State Council Information Office.

The Long March-6 will be a new type of high-speed response launch vehicle, which will be capable of placing not less than 1 tonne of payload into a sun-synchronous orbit at a height of 700 km.

The Long March-7 will be capable of placing 5.5 tonnes of payload into a sun-synchronous orbit at a height of 700 km, according to the white paper.

The country will also conduct special demonstrations and pre-research on key technologies for heavy-lift launch vehicles, the document said.

Since 2006, Long March rockets have accomplished 67 successful launches, sending 79 spacecraft into planned orbits and demonstrating noteworthy improvement in the reliability of China's launch vehicles. (Xinhua)

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