China has launched the first of a news series of oceanographic satellites, with the HaiYang-2A (HY-2A) launched at 22:57UTC on August 15. The launch was carried out by a Long March 4B (Chang Zheng-4B) launch vehicle from the Taiyuan Satellite Launch Center, as the Chinese ramp up their impressive launch rate. This mission was originally scheduled to take place in 2009. However, it was delayed for unspecified reasons.
Pakistan’s Ambassador to China, Masood Khan has said that Pakistan’s new communication satellite—PakSat-1R, is important for the country for many reasons. “It is a symbol of Pakistan-China cooperation in the area of space science and technology. It is the first of the kind to be launched by China and Pakistan. Therefore it establishes a new platform, and it marks a new beginning” said Ambassador Khan in an interview with China News Agency on the occasion of launch of PakSat-1R from China.
Tropical Depression 06W is still slowing, making its way through the South China Sea today and has weakened overnight. NASA infrared satellite imagery showed a much more disorganized storm with scattered convection, which accounts for its weakened status from tropical storm to tropical depression.
China will start building a test satellite later this month (April) to detect electromagnetic anomalies in the atmosphere, as part of the country's proposed earthquake monitoring network, and hopes to launch it in 2014.