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Satellite launch center increases international space cooperation
Last Updated: 2017-12-20 00:12 | Xinhua
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Alcomsat-1, Algeria's first communication satellite, was successfully positioned at 24.8 degrees west longitude in geostationary orbit Monday.

The positioning took place after eight hours of controlled flight conducted by a Chinese control center, paving the way for the satellite's further operation.

Alcomsat-1 is the first cooperative project in the aerospace industry between China and Algeria. The Algerian national space agency believes that the cooperation prospects between the two countries in the space industry are promising.

Launched by a Chinese Long March-3B carrier rocket from the Xichang Satellite Launch Center in the southwestern province of Sichuan on Dec. 11, the satellite is also China's first high-throughput international commercial satellite.

With a life of 15 years, as well as 33 satellite transponders and seven sets of antennas, it will be used by Algeria for broadcast and television, emergency communication, distance education, e-governance, enterprise communication, broadband access and satellite-based navigation.

Alcomsat-1 is the latest example of the Xichang Satellite Launch Center's role in China's international space cooperation.

The center has played the role for a long time. Since Dec. 1, 1984, the day when it was opened to the public, 32 international launches have taken place at the center, setting up a few milestones along the way.

On April 7, 1990, the center saw the launch of AsiaSat-1, the first international commercial satellite launched in China. It earned China a place in the international commercial satellite market, heralding the country's future contributions to the landscape of the space industry.

On May 14, 2007, Nigcomsat-1, the first satellite Chinese scientists designed, built for another country, was launched at the center, and was fixed at its planned point in orbit 16 days later.

Eight years later, the center handled the launch of LaoSat-1, marking the country's first step of exporting satellites to countries in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations.

Last but not least, in January 2016, carried by a Long March-3B rocket, Belarus's first communication satellite, Belintersat-1, was launched at the Xichang center, which was the first time China launched a satellite for a European country.

The center has been focusing on its quality management system, becoming the first launch center in China to have met the ISO9001 standard, in 2006.

So far, 92.6 percent of the launches at the center have been successful, including all 81 launches since 1997, with the latest being the Alcomsat-1. It also has the most launches and the highest launch trajectory among satellite launch centers in China.

"We must keep heading forward in our bid to build a world-class satellite launch center, and make our contributions to establishing China as a leading power in the space industry," said Zhang Xueyu, director of the center.

"The center is an important window for China to open up its space industry to the world," said Wang Jingzhong, secretary of the Party committee at the center. "We'll stay true to our mission and continue to play our part in the industry."

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