(Associated Press via NewsEdge) China launched a domestically produced communications satellite into orbit to provide wider and more advanced television services across the country, the state-run Xinhua News Agency reported.
A Long March-3B rocket lifted off from the Xichang launching site in western Sichuan province, placing the 5.1-ton satellite into orbit, Xinhua said.
The Sinosat-2 satellite was built by the China Academy of Space Technology for the Sino Satellite Communications Co., or Sinosat, a state-run provider of satellite communications.
Sinosat-2 is designed to provide broader coverage of TV signals and allow for more digital and live broadcast TV services across China, Xinhua said.
China's decades-old aerospace program has gathered momentum in recent years, allowing the country to place more advanced satellites into orbit for both commercial and military purposes.
Sinosat-1, built by the French company Aerospatiale, was launched in 1998. Sinosat plans to launch a third satellite next year mainly to provide radio and TV services, Xinhua said.
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