There had been some rumours of an earlier launch failure in late 1969 but these were incorrect. The first test flight of the Changzheng-1("Long March" 1) launch vehicle (without an operating third stage) did not come until January 10, 1970, thus ruling out any earlier launches
It was the first DF-4 launch that is failed on November 16, 1969.On January 30 (not 10!), 1970 the second DF-4 (not the first CZ-1!) was successfully launched.There was not CZ-1 suborbital launch before April 24, 1970.
Quote from: anik on 04/24/2020 06:39 amIt was the first DF-4 launch that is failed on November 16, 1969.On January 30 (not 10!), 1970 the second DF-4 (not the first CZ-1!) was successfully launched.There was not CZ-1 suborbital launch before April 24, 1970.I was not aware what the launch vehicle was that resulted in the November 1969 launch failure, so thank you for that information.The book China Today: Space Programmes (in Chinese) says that there was a suborbital test of the CZ-1 without an operating third stage in January 1970. In the early 1990s I queried this with a representative of CGWIC and he confirmed the report, and he gave the launch date as January 10. So maybe his information was incorrect?
On Nov 1 1969 posters have been identified in Beijing which are honoring the launch of China's first man-made satellite. And there are some more reasons, why a satellite launch in November would have made sense. First, China celebrates in October the 25th anniversary of the countrys founding. Second, it was well known for Chinese scientists that Japan was also preparing a satellite launch and it was a question of honour for them to be the first in the competition
I have checked the webpage of China Academy of Launch Vehicle Technology. Under this link you can find a report which is saying that the Jan 1970 launch was a CZ-1 test. From my point of view it seems that flight testing of DF-4 only started Nov 1970 and exclusively from the Jingyu missile base.
Quote from: limen4 on 04/24/2020 08:13 pmI have checked the webpage of China Academy of Launch Vehicle Technology. Under this link you can find a report which is saying that the Jan 1970 launch was a CZ-1 test. From my point of view it seems that flight testing of DF-4 only started Nov 1970 and exclusively from the Jingyu missile base.The text you refer to seems not to be a logical and concise. Its says for example that in Nov 1968 the authorities (National Defense Science and Technology Commission and the National Defense Industry Office) requested the 1st Academy to test fly CZ-1 1st and 2nd stages as a medium-to-long range missile in 1968 and to strive to launch satellite before the National Day in 1968.Of course this is impossible as the National Day of October 1, 1968, preceded the quoted date of the order. It is reasonable that the order was actually given in November 1967. Nevertheless, the authorities ordered to fly test the DF-4 medium-to-long range missile before launching the satellite. It was this missile launched successfully on 30 Jan 1970.Much earlier, in 2004, in a history of DF-4 five launches of the batch 01 group 1 missiles were listed as:1969 Nov 16 -- DF-4 №2 (2nd stage failure)1970 Jan 30 -- DF-4 №1 (successful)1970 Apr 24 -- CZ-1 (successful)1970 Nov 23 -- DF-4 (Jingyu)1971 Nov 15 -- DF-4 №6 (Jingyu, silo launch, successful)Of course the second CZ-1 launch on 1971 Mar 03 should be added to have a complete set of six DF-4 tested in the first group, four as DF-4 and two as CZ-1.Even more earlier, in 2002, full serial numbers appeared for the first two tests (601902 and 601901), for DFH-1 (601904) and for the 1970 Nov 23 failed test (701006). Two remaining numbers seem to be 601903 and 701005.
Can't remember my source, but the third stage was reported to carry a large disk to aid optical tracking. Presumably this disk successfully deployed, as this would explain why the third stage decayed more rapidly that the satellite. However, I've never seen a picture of the third stage with the disk. Does anyone know any more?
If it is the same batch of five would it not be 601905?