China launches new commercial telecommunication satellite
A Long March-3B carrier rocket carrying the commercial telecommunication satellite APSTAR-6D blasts off from the Xichang Satellite Launch Center in southwest China's Sichuan Province, July 9, 2020. China successfully sent the satellite into a planned orbit on Thursday. (Photo by Guo Wenbin/Xinhua)
China successfully sent a commercial telecommunication satellite, known as APSTAR-6D, into a planned orbit from the southwestern Xichang Satellite Launch Center on Thursday.
The APSTAR-6D telecommunication satellite was launched by a Long March-3B carrier rocket at 8:11 p.m. (Beijing Time), according to the center.
The satellite was developed by the China Academy of Space Technology (CAST), a subsidiary of China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation.
It was purchased by the APT Mobile SatCom Limited to provide satellite broadband telecommunication services for airborne, shipborne, vehicle-borne, and other mobile communication applications.
The development of APSTAR-6D started in August 2016. It has a launch mass of about 5,550 kg, with a lifespan of 15 years.
A geostationary satellite, APSTAR-6D is a part of China's first global high-throughput broadband satellite communication system.
It is expected to provide high-quality broadband network and data communication services for users across the Asia-Pacific region, according to the CAST.
With a communication capacity of about 50 Gbps and a single-beam capacity of up to one Gbps, APSTAR-6D will serve its users with high-quality voice and data transmissions.
To date, the CAST has successfully launched 11 commercial telecommunication satellites for international clients.
Thursday's launch was the 339th by the Long March rocket series.