The rocket Kuaizhou-1A carrying the satellite JL-1 and two CubeSats XY-S1 and Caton-1 blasts off from Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in northwest China's Gansu Province, Jan. 9, 2017. The rocket sent three satellites into space in its first commercial mission on Monday. (Xinhua/Wang Jiangbo)
JIUQUAN, Gansu, Jan. 9 (Xinhua) -- The rocket Kuaizhou-1A (KZ-1A) has sent three satellites into space in its first commercial mission on Monday.
The rocket, carrying the satellite JL-1 and two CubeSats XY-S1 and Caton-1, blasted off from northwestern China's Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center at around 12:11 p.m. Monday Beijing Time, according to a statement from the center.
The KZ-1A was developed from the Kuaizhou-1 rocket with improvements in adaptability. It is a low-cost solid-fuelled carrier rocket with high reliability and short preparation period and was designed to launch low-orbit satellites weighing under 300 kg.
The JL-1 is a multifunctional remote-sensing satellite providing high-definition video images which is expected to be used for land resource and forestry surveying, environmental protection, transport and disaster prevention and relief purposes.
The XY-S1 and Caton-1 are experimental satellites to test technologies of low-orbit narrow-band communication and VHF Data Exchange System (VDES) respectively.
A rocket technology company under the China Aerospace Science and Industry Corporation was responsible for the launch mission. The success of the mission marks the company's capability of providing flexible, convenient, quick and economical launch services for domestic and overseas clients, said the statement.