China has successfully launched its largest carrier rocket, Long March-5, on Thursday at the Wenchang Satellite Launch Center, south China’s Hainan Province.
Thursday’s launch is the maiden flight for Long March-5, the basic module for China’s new generation of environment-friendly carrier rocket series.
Long March-5 has expanded the diameter of liquid-fuel rockets to 5 meters from the previous 3.35 meters. Designed as China’s strongest rocket, the 57-meter-long rocket is equipped with four liftoff thrusters each with a diameter of 3.35 meters, and thus is powered with more than 1,000 tons of thrust force.
Using liquefied kerosene and very low-temperature or cryogenic liquefied oxygen and hydrogen as its fuels, the rocket is labeled as being non-toxic and pollution-free. Its highly stable and cutting-edge control system is of great significance in China’s upgrading of its carrier rockets.
Started in 2006, the design and research results of Long March-5 have facilitated the manufacture and successful launch of Long March-6 and Long March-7.
Long March-5 is the first to use the No. 1 launch pad at the Wenchang Satellite Launch Center, which is China’s first launch center along the coast line.