China successfully sent a low-Earth-orbit communication satellite into space via a Long March 11 carrier rocket on Saturday morning from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in northwest China, marking great strides for China’s satellite launch in low orbit.
As the first satellite in the Hongyun family, the Hongyun-1 is expected to verify low-orbit broadband communication technologies applied on the satellite constellation.
According to NASA Space Flight, a U.S.-based space flight news website, this is the first satellite in a vast space-based communications network capable of covering every corner on Earth, including the Arctic and Antarctica.
The constellation, announced by China Aerospace Science and Industry Corporation (CASIC) in 2016 aims to build a space-based communications network of 156 communications satellites into low Earth orbit, at an altitude of 160 to 2,000 km.
Once completed, the network will serve as an all-in-one system providing communication, navigation, and remote sensing services for people across the world.