Launch has occurred. It was sometime before 04:00 GMT, does anyone have anything more exact?
Quote from: GW_Simulations on 10/25/2008 07:00 AMLaunch has occurred. It was sometime before 04:00 GMT, does anyone have anything more exact?My calculations suggest 01:15 UT. I have not seen a Chinese launch time yet.
Article from Rui:http://www.nasaspaceflight.com/2008/10/china-dual-launch-via-chang-zheng-4b/
The quoted article suggests that there is something particularly myserious about this pair of launches compaired with the two earlier pairs of Shijian 6 satellits.
This is the inaugural launch from a brand new launch complex (or "发射工位", Fashe Gongwei, launch station) at TSLC. (not difficult to find out, if you compare the photo with previous ones)Related Chinese media report:http://www.chinanews.com.cn/gn/news/2008/10-25/1425211.shtml
The behaviour of this pair of satellites will be interesting. When the first cluster was launched satellite B performed some manoeuvres while A did not: this fits with some Chinese illustrations showing the satellites as being a (non-manoeuvrable) FY-1 platform and a (manoeuvable) CAST-968 platform.
However, on the second cluster *neither* satellite manoeuvred. Let's see what happens with the new pair of satellites.
I'm wondering this too. Maybe it's too early to search for it: it was not before June 2006 that the construction of the second CZ-4B pad began.
As of the 2008 launch, we are seeing Shijian-6-03B = 33408 = 2008-053A manoeuvres already.
Apart from a graphic which appeared at the time of the first launch - which represented the satellites with a FY-1 platform and a CAST-968 platform - no photographs, illustratons or other details of the satellites have been given.
The fact is that A and B satellites are indeed built on the basis of FY-1 and CAST-968. There are Chinese articles to confirm this.By the way, I found the complete list of CAST-968 based satellites launched by December 2007: Haiyan-1A and 1B, Tance-1 and 2, Shijian 6B (two), Shiyan weixing-2 and Yaogan weixing-2.