In a surprise launch, China orbited two environmental and disaster management satellites from the Taiyuan Satellite Launch Center on early Sunday. Huanjing-2A (HJ-2A) and Huanjing-2B (HJ-2B) were launched from the LC9 Launch Complex at 03:23UTC using the Long March-4B – Chang Zheng-4B – (Y42) rocket.
Developed by the China Academy of Space Technology (CAST), the two new satellites will replace the Huanjing-1A and Huanjing-1B (launched in 2008) to provide services concerning environmental protection, natural resources, water conservancy, agriculture, and forestry.
Both satellites are 16-meter optical satellites with high mobility, precision control, and stability, as well as strong load adaptability and long lifespans.
HJ-2A and HJ-2B have the same identical instrument suite. These are upgraded versions of the original HJ-1 instruments with the addition of an atmospheric correction instrument.
The two satellites during processing – Chinese State MediaThe two vehicles can provide 16-meter multispectral, 48-meter hyperspectral and infrared image data to support the monitorization of natural disasters and land utilization, regulation and protection of water resources, dynamic monitoring of crop areas, and assessment of yield – as well as quake emergency rescue.
Both satellites are based on the CAST-2000 satellite platform bus. This is a compact satellite platform characterized by its ...