China launches its “most sophisticated” observation satellite

PTI Beijing | Updated on January 22, 2018 Published on December 29, 2015

China today successfully launched its “most sophisticated” observation satellite, Gaofen-4, as part of the country’s high-definition earth observation project.

Gaofen-4 was launched from the Xichang Satellite Launch Centre in the southwestern province of Sichuan aboard a Long March-3B carrier rocket.

It was the 222th flight of the Long March rocket series, the State Administration of Science, Technology and Industry for National Defense (SASTIND) said.

Gaofen-4 is China’s first geosynchronous orbit HD optical imaging satellite and the world’s most sophisticated HD geosynchronous orbit remote sensing satellite, Xu Dazhe, head of SASTIND and China National Space Administration said.

Different from Gaofen-1 and Gaofen-2 in low orbits (600-700 km) around the earth, Gaofen-4 is located at the orbit 36,000 kilometers away from the earth and moves synchronously with the earth.

It can “see” an oil tanker on the sea with a huge CMOS camera, reaching the best imaging level among global high-orbit remote sensing satellites, Li Guo, chief designer of Gaofen-4 said.

The successful launch of Gaofen-4 was the 19th space mission in this year.

It will be used for disaster prevention and relief, surveillance of geological disasters and forest disasters, and meteorologic forecast, state-run Xinhua news agency quoted Tong Xudong, the chief designer of the Gaofen project with SASTIND as saying.

The Gaofen project aims to launch seven high-definition observation satellites before 2020.

Gaofen-1, the first satellite of the project, was launched in April 2013.

Published on December 29, 2015
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