China to develop bigger rockets to carry heavy loads
Beijing: Buoyed by a series of successful space missions, China today said it launch new generation rockets with capacity to carry large payloads to its planned space station which will be ready by 2020.
The new rockets will be launched during the 12th Five-year Plan period (2011-2015), Yuan Jie, deputy general manager of the China Aerospace Science and Technology Corp (CASC), said.
"The rockets in service cannot meet the demand from future manned space station, we need rockets with even larger carrying capacities," said Yuan.
His comments came as China successfully completed its longest manned space mission to build a space lab of its own by 2020.
The large-sized planned rocket included Long March 5 and the medium-sized Long March 7, Yuan said.
The Long March 5 carrier rocket is the rocket with the largest carrying capacity under development in China and it will be mainly used for the launching of manned space station to be ready by 2020, Yuan said.
The new rocket will have a capacity to carry 20-tonne payload to the near earth orbit.
The Long March 7 carrier rocket, with a carrying capacity of 13 tonnes for the near earth orbit, will launch the cargo spacecraft for the future manned space station, he said.
The new generation rockets employ numerous new technologies, in particular, they adopt new engines with non-toxic and no-polluting liquified propellant which are safer and more environment friendly, state run Xinhua quoted Yuan as saying.
The two types of rockets will be launched at a new launch site in south China`s Hainan Province, and on the whole, development of the new-type rockets are well under way, according to Yuan.
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