China launches Turkish satellite
JIUQUAN, Dec 18, 2012 (Xinhua via COMTEX) --
A Turkish Earth observation
satellite was successfully sent into space from northwest China
early Wednesday morning, marking the completion of this year's
A statement released by the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in
northwest China's Gobi Desert said the Turkish satellite, the
GK-2, was launched at 12:13 a.m. and was delivered into its
predetermined orbit by a Long March 2D carrier rocket.
It marked the 174th flight of the Long March series of carrier
The launch of the Turkish satellite was based on a contract
signed by the China Great Wall Industry Corporation (CGWIC) under
the China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation in May
The CGWIC is an organization authorized by the government to
provide satellite in-orbit delivery, commercial launch services
and aerospace technology applications in China, according to the
The satellite, jointly developed by Turkey's Space Technologies
Research Institute and Turkish Aerospace Industries, Inc., will
mainly be used for environmental protection, mineral resource
exploration, urban planning and disaster monitoring and
management, the statement said.
China successfully sent 28 satellites or spacecraft into space
via 19 launches this year, it said, adding that the most
significant achievement was the country's first manned space
docking maneuvers conducted in June, it said.
Next year, China will carry out a manned space docking test
between the orbiting target module Tiangong-1 and the Shenzhou-10
spacecraft. It will also send the Chang'e-3 moon probe into space,
which is expected to land and stay on the moon in the second stage
of the country's lunar probe program.
The country plans to send nearly 20 satellites into space in
2013, it said.
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