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Progress of Beidou Navigation System

2012-12-27 16:30 CNTV     Web Editor: yaolan comment

China launched Beidou-1, an experimental regional navigation system, in 2000, making it the third country in the world with an independent satellite navigation system. Over the past five years, China has sent 16 Beidou Navigation Satellites into orbit. Let's review the development of the Beidou regional navigation system over the years.

The first Beidou Navigation satellite was launched in April, 2007. It was the initial step in the construction of the Beidou Regional Navigation System.

Four years later, in April 2011, China sent the 8th Beidou Navigation satellite into orbit, marking the successful formation of the Beidou Regional Navigation System. China sent the 12th and 13th satellites into orbit in April, 2012.

The Beidou Regional Navigation System was fully completed on October 26th, when the 16th satellite was launched.

Li Changjiang, chief commander of Beidou Satellite Navigation System, said, "The satellite we designed has a life of only eight years. If we had postponed the efforts to build the system, the first satellite would have expired just as the last one was launched. This has pushed us to complete the deployment within a short period of time."

Launching the satellites has required special Long March 3C Series rockets, which are capable of carrying two satellites into space for every rocket.

Jiang Jie, chief designer of the Long March 3C series rocket, said, "With this technology, we first separate the upper satellite from the rocket. After a readjustment, the part linking the two satellites is broken. Then the lower satellite is separated after a second readjustment."

To achieve a global coverage around 2020, ten more Beidou Navigation Satellites will be launched.

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