Tuesday, August 24, 2010

China launches high resolution mapping satellite

BEIJING: China today successfully launched its first high resolution, stereoscopic mapping satellite for accurate surveys of its land resources.

The satellite 'Mapping Satellite-I', which was launched on a Long March 2-D carrier rocket from the northwestern Jiuquan Satellite Launch Centre at 3:10 pm (local time), has successfully entered into the preset orbit, the centre said.

The civilian use of the satellite will start in the second half of 2011.

The launch came just in two months of successfully transporting a navigation satellite, its fourth orbiter, into space.

Mapping Satellite-I, developed by a company under the China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC), would be mainly used to conduct scientific experiments, carry out survey on land resources and mapping, said a statement posted on Ministry of National Defence website.

The remote sensing information and test results from the satellite would promote the country's scientific research and economic development, it said.

The launch was the 128th for China's Long March series of rockets since April 24, 1970, when a Long March-1 rocket successfully sent the country's first satellite Dongfanghong-1 into the space.


Monday, August 9, 2010

Azerbaijan interested in purchase of JF-17 Thunder fighters

Pakistani fighter Catic JF-17 Thunder has been demonstrated at an airshow in Farnborough.

It has attracted the interest of a number of countries including Azerbaijan.

JF-17 Thunder fighter was initially developed by Chinese engineers for the needs of the Pakistani army. First fighters JF-17 Thunder (Chinese FC-1 Saolun) were supplied to the Pakistani armed forces in 2007.

Now the project is entering a new level and the Chinese-Pakistani producers are searching ways to the international market.

Among potential customers who demonstrated interest to the innovation are Azerbaijan, Iran, Egypt, Turkey, Venezuela and a number of other countries.

Earlier, the press spread information about an agreement with Azerbaijan regarding the purchase of at least 24 JF-17 fighters estimated at about $17m each, which envisions the volumes of supply at about $500,000,000.

The JF-17 fighter is 14 m in length, the wing span is 8.5 m and it is equipped with RD-93 engine.

The capacity of the plane is 3720 kg, the battle radius at the fighter version is 1200 km, maximal flight range is 3000 km. It can be equipped with different types of air-air and air-land rockets, as well as air bombs.