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Chinese private space company to launch latest rocket in 2024
As a leader in the nation's private space sector, Space Pioneer is the first and only private company in China that has reached orbit with a liquid-fuel rocket - with the first flight of its TL 2 rocket in April at the Jiuquan center.
Chinese private space company to launch latest rocket in 2024
by Brad Bartz
Los Angeles CA (SPX) Jul 04, 2023

In the vanguard of the rapidly evolving commercial space industry, Beijing-based private firm Space Pioneer plans the inaugural launch of its TL 3 carrier rocket in 2024. The launch will signify an ambitious stride toward fortifying China's presence in the commercial space launch market.

As reported in an exclusive interview with China Daily, Kang Yonglai, founder and chairman of Space Pioneer, disclosed the timeline for the TL 3's progress. Initiated at the end of 2021, the design phase of the TL 3 project has reached fruition, with component fabrication already underway. Space Pioneer anticipates the inaugural flight to take off from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center, located in northwestern China, during the first half of 2024.

Given a successful maiden voyage, the company has an aggressive timeline for follow-on launches, with two additional TL 3 missions slated for the latter half of 2024, escalating to a dozen launches in 2025, according to Kang.

The TL 3's capabilities, as delineated by Kang, are impressive. Designed to transport over 10 metric tons of payload into diverse orbital paths, the rocket is equipped for deploying large satellites or deploying multiple smaller satellites in a single mission, strengthening its utility in the commercial launch sector.

Space Pioneer provided further details on the rocket's specifications. Standing at 71 meters and with a diameter of 3.8 meters, the TL 3, weighing 590 tons at liftoff with a thrust of 770 tons, has the potential to deliver satellites weighing a combined 14 tons to a typical sun-synchronous orbit at an altitude of 500 kilometers or carry a 17-ton spacecraft into a low-Earth orbit.

The TL 3 is also envisioned to have two derivatives - the TL 3H and TL 3M. The TL 3H, with its two side boosters, is projected to stand at 88 meters and possess the strength to dispatch up to 68 tons of payload into a low-Earth orbit or 42 tons to a 500-km sun-synchronous orbit. The TL 3M is envisioned as a revolutionary rocket-launched intercontinental space plane.

The record of Space Pioneer within China's private space sector is noteworthy. It is recognized as the first and only private Chinese company to have achieved orbit with a liquid-fuel rocket, accomplished via the maiden flight of the TL 2 rocket in April at the Jiuquan center.

Source: Xinhua News Agency

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