Long March-6A, China's first carrier rocket powered by a solid and liquid engine, will make its maiden flight in 2021, its developer said.
Long March-6A, a new generation medium-launch vehicle, can be powered by different numbers of liquid and solid engines to achieve different carrying capacity levels, which is more cost-effective, according to the Eighth Academy of China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC).
The rocket has a higher degree of automation and is also more intelligent as it can monitor and diagnose its potential problems.
China joined the space club on April 24, 1970, when the Long March-1 carrier rocket launched the country's first satellite, Dongfanghong-1, into orbit.
As of March 2019, 17 Long March carrier rocket types have been developed and operated since 1970, ensuring a series of significant space project implementations. These have included manned space programs, lunar exploration, the BeiDou Navigation Satellite System, and the Gaofen Earth observation project.