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Jason 2 preview

The joint American and European satellite project called Jason 2 will monitor global seal levels.

 Mission | Science

Phoenix landing preview

Less than two weeks before the Phoenix spacecraft arrives at Mars, this previews the landing and the planned science on the planet's surface.

 Presentation | Q&A

STS-82: In review

The second servicing of the Hubble Space Telescope was accomplished in Feb. 1997 when the shuttle astronauts replaced a pair of instruments and other internal equipment on the observatory.


STS-81: In review

The fifth shuttle docking mission to the space station Mir launched astronaut Jerry Linenger to begin his long-duration stay on the complex and brought John Blaha back to Earth.


Discovery rolls out

Discovery travels from the Vehicle Assembly Building to pad 39A in preparation for the STS-124 mission.


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Communications spacecraft launched by China

Posted: June 9, 2008

China launched a new communications satellite Monday to beam television programming directly to millions of homes and businesses fitted with small receiving dishes, a state news agency reported.

The Chinasat 9 satellite blasted off from the Xichang space center at 1215 GMT (8:15 a.m. EDT) Monday, or at about sunset at the launch site, the Xinhua news agency reported.

The nearly 10,000-pound spacecraft was driven into orbit by a Long March 3B rocket, the most powerful booster in the Chinese space program.

Built by Thales Alenia Space of France, Chinasat 9 will be stationed in geosynchronous orbit along the equator at 92.2 degrees east longitude. The craft's 22 Ku-band transponders will be activated to provide communications services across China for more than 15 years, according to a Thales spokesperson.

Chinasat 9's communications payload will broadcast live television coverage for the Beijing Olympic Games in August, Xinhua said.

The satellite will be operated by Beijing-based China Direct Broadcast Satellite Co., a state-owned company providing satellite broadcasting, mobile communications and Internet services.

Monday's launch marked the 28th orbital delivery of a satellite this year, and the third mission for China's space program in 2008.