LAUNCHES


Complex to build 20 Chang Zheng 11 rockets per year


(20 Sep 2020) State-owned space conglomerate China Aerospace Science and Technology Corp (CAST) is working with local authorities in Shandong province to set up a manufacturing complex for solid-propellant rockets, according to a project insider.

Jin Xin, deputy project manager of the Chang Zheng 11 solid-propellant rocket at the China Academy of Launch Vehicle Technology, said that his academy and the city government of Haiyang, a city administered by Yantai, are co-operating to construct the 800-hectare complex that will be capable of producing 20 solid-propellant rockets each year.

The Beijing-based academy is China's dominant maker of rockets and a subsidiary of China Aerospace Science and Technology Corp.

"It will be tasked with manufacturing our Chang Zheng 11 and Smart Dragon series solid-fuel rockets," he said. "Construction work is underway and is expected to be done before May 2021."

The complex will be able to make and test all types of major parts on a solid-propellant rocket, including its engines. Furthermore, it will also hold satellite production and testing facilities, according to Jin.

The project is intended to facilitate sea-based launch missions and nurture local space-related industries in Shandong.

Liu Wei, a rocket researcher at the China Academy of Launch Vehicle Technology (CALT), explained that Yantai has several advantages for seaborne launch operations to be conducted from there.

"First, launching rockets from the sea off Yantai features more safety for people living under the trajectory. Second, there are many ground-based monitoring and tracking facilities along China's eastern coasts. Third, the city has an ice-free port, a good transport network that is well connected with other regions, as well as strong shipbuilding and marine engineering industries," he said.

Reference: Xinhua

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