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China’s attempt to launch heavy lift carrier rocket fails

Long March-5 Y2 rocket was due to carry the heaviest Shijian-18 satellite. Courtesy: Reuters

Beijing: Chinese state media reported that a heavy lift rocket launch had failed after an anomaly occurred during its flight on Sunday. The’Long March-5 Y2′ carrier rocket is one of the most powerful rockets in the world.

Last year, Long March-5 had successfully made its maiden flight in Wenchang. The rocket is capable of lifting 25 tonnes into a low earth orbit and a 14 tonne class of communications satellite.

TOI reported that a video from the live broadcast showed the rocket lifting off and shooting into the sky with a voice-over indicating everything was going well. It was not clear from the live broadcast if anything went wrong.

It was aimed at testing China’s new Dongfanghong-5 (DFH- 5) satellite platform and carry out in-orbit experiments including Q/V band satellite communication, satellite-ground laser communication technologies and an advanced Hull electric propulsion system, according to Chinese news agency Xinhua, which called the launch a failure.