Beijing: China today successfully sent a French-made high power communication and broadcsting satellite into orbit.
A Long March-3B carrier rocket launched the satellite `APSTAR-7` from the southwestern Xichang Satellite Center, state-run Xinhua news agency reported.
The satellite separated from the rocket and reached its designated orbit 26 minutes after its launch.
Produced by Thales Alenia Space for Hong Kong-based APT Satellite Company Limited, the satellite will replace the APSTAR-2R, which is currently in orbit.
APSTAR-7 is a high-power broadcasting and communication satellite which is expected to last around 16 years before needing to be replaced.
It is able to provide TV transmission and satellite communication services to Asia, the Middle East, Africa, Australia and Europe, as well as live TV broadcasting and trans-continental communication and broadcasting services to China, the Middle East, Central Asia and Africa.
Today`s launch marked the 159th mission of the Long March carrier rocket series developed by China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASTC), the report said.