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World's first methane-fueled rocket makes history, courtesy of LandSpace and GCL
Dedicated to integrating renewable energy into daily life, GCL is one of the leading forces that drive the energy industry's digital transformation and e-mobility innovation. To help China and beyond accelerate toward low-carbon targets, the company has set up multiple zero-carbon industry parks and zero-carbon smart cities.
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World's first methane-fueled rocket makes history, courtesy of LandSpace and GCL
by Simon Mansfield
Sydney, Australia (SPX) Jul 25, 2023

LandSpace, in partnership with GCL System Integration Technology Co., Ltd. (GCL), has successfully launched the world's first methane-powered rocket, Zhuque-2 (ZQ-2 Y2), into orbit. The launch took place at 9 a.m. (0100 GMT) from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in northwest China.

GCL, a global pioneer in renewable energy services, was instrumental in the development of Zhuque-2. This collaboration has resulted in China becoming the first nation globally to launch a methane-propelled rocket carrier into space. Methane, a clean, cost-effective, and potent fuel, offers an optimal solution for reusable rockets.

The Zhuque-2 is a product of LandSpace's independent research and development initiatives, leading to significant progress in affordable liquid propellant carrier rockets. The shift toward methane represents a major technological leap in an era where environmental concerns have become paramount in rocket research and development.

Globally, there's an increasing call for alternatives to carbon-intensive technology as part of a comprehensive response to climate change. In this context, methane emerges as a preferred choice, given its lower weight, reduced space requirements, and streamlined maintenance protocol.

The successful creation and testing of a methane-powered rocket represent a significant achievement for China, placing it at the forefront of the global race towards sustainable rocket propulsion. This achievement, supported by GCL, sets a trajectory for China's private aerospace sector to develop next-generation carrier rockets that are not only affordable and high-performing, but also environmentally friendly.

GCL's vision of driving renewable innovation aligns well with LandSpace's dedication to green, efficient, and cost-effective solutions for sustainable global development. The joint venture between the two giants foresees an integration of their technological expertise, thereby catalyzing advancements in both renewable energy and aerospace sectors. A potential area of collaboration includes leveraging Generative Artificial Intelligence (AI) to digitize the entire aerospace industry's value chain.

As a leading proponent of integrating renewable energy into everyday life, GCL has been instrumental in promoting the digital transformation of the energy industry and propelling e-mobility innovation. The company has established numerous zero-carbon industry parks and smart cities to bolster efforts towards achieving low-carbon targets both in China and internationally.

GCL is also optimizing the use of renewable energy sources by establishing wind and solar farms in desert regions. These initiatives not only provide significant environmental benefits but also stimulate economic growth in the surrounding communities. The company's active participation in the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) has further accelerated the development of new energy infrastructure worldwide, thus facilitating decarbonization and economic growth in the regions they operate in.

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