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China Launches Another Pair of BeiDou Navigation Satellites

By | November 19, 2018
A Long March-3B carrier rocket during liftoff. Photo: Xinhua/Ju Zhenhua

A Long March-3B carrier rocket during liftoff. Photo: Xinhua/Ju Zhenhua

China launched two new BeiDou Navigation Satellite System (BDS) satellites into space on a Long March-3B carrier rocket from the Xichang Satellite Launch Center in Sichuan Province. Liftoff took place at at 2:07 a.m. local time on Nov. 19.

Previously, China launched a set of twin BeiDou satellites on Oct. 15. Following its October launch, China lofted another BeiDou satellite into Geostationary Orbit (GEO) earlier this month. 

According to Chief Designer Yang Changfeng, a basic system with BeiDou-3 satellites orbiting will be in place by the year-end to serve countries in the China-proposed Belt and Road Initiative. By around 2020, when the BeiDou system goes global, it will have more than 30 satellites.