China’s private space company launches 3 satellites into orbit

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China launched three commercial satellites from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in northwest China at 1:00 p.m. on Thursday.

The satellites were propelled into orbit by a CERES-1 Y13 carrier rocket crafted by China’s commercial space company, Galactic Energy. The launch mission, code-named “Love on Top,” was the company’s third mission launched in 10 days.

The satellites include one imaging satellite, the TEE-01B, and two remote sensing satellites for technology verification named NS-3 A and NS-3 B.

The upper stage of the rocket, named Eros-1, has been repurposed as an on-orbit test platform. It can offer a cost-effective and convenient space testing environment for new technologies, components and products.

The platform is designed to operate and facilitate experiments in orbit for over six months.

(Cover photo by Wang Haixia. Video shot by Su Shilong. Zhao Chenchen contributed to the story.)