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Advanced satellite images released to public

By ZHAO LEI | | Updated: 2023-03-28 21:38
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The China National Space Administration published the first images taken by an advanced Chinese Earth-observation satellite on Tuesday afternoon.

The 14 images were taken by the world-class apparatus on the Hyperspectral Multifunctional Observation Satellite, including a wide thermal infrared imager and an advanced hyper-spectral imager. They will help scientists track greenhouse gases such as nitrogen dioxide and ozone, monitor water quality in lakes and rivers and look for minerals and other resources, the administration said in a news release.

Data obtained by the spacecraft will support China's efforts to respond to climate change, it said, noting the main users will be the Ministry of Ecology and Environment, the Ministry of Natural Resources and the China Meteorological Administration.

Launched by a Long March 2D carrier rocket from the Taiyuan Satellite Launch Center in Shanxi province in early December, the satellite now travels in a sun-synchronous orbit 705 kilometers above the ground.

The satellite was built by the Shanghai Academy of Spaceflight Technology. It is in the middle of a six-month trial operation and has transmitted 320 terabytes of data back to ground control.

Its deployment marked the completion of China's Gaofen space-based, high-resolution Earth observation network.

China launched the Gaofen program in May 2010 and listed it as one of 16 nationally important projects in science and technology. At present, the program has placed more than 20 satellites in active service.

Images and data from the satellites have been widely used at thousands of research bodies and enterprises in 28 industries across China and have helped reduce the country's dependence on foreign remote-sensing products.

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