Encyclopedia Astronautica
CZ



fb1eng10.jpg
FB-1 Engine
fb1h.jpg
FB-1
chrvtest.jpg
Chinese RV Test
Test of low drag Chinese re-entry vehicle, 1998.
Credit: Richard D. Fisher, Jr
zfb1.jpg
FB-1
zfb1laun.jpg
FB-1
cz2e2001.jpg
CZ-2E
cz2edwg.gif
CZ-2E
Credit: © Mark Wade
lm2e2.jpg
LM-2E
Launch photo of Long March LM-2E launch vehicle.
cz2fsz41.jpg
CZ-2F at LA4
cz2flrb1.jpg
CZ-2F LRB
zcz2foas.jpg
CZ-2F
p921lv1.jpg
CZ-2F Rollout
cz2f0211.jpg
CZ-2F in VAB
cz2ftow1.jpg
CZ-2F Escape Tower
p921lv1f.jpg
CZ-2F Rollout Big
p921lvf2.jpg
CZ-2F on pad Full
zcz2feng.jpg
CZ-2
zcz2.jpg
CZ-2
zcz2st2.jpg
CZ-2 Stage 2
zcz2fore.jpg
CZ-2 instrument bay
zz2wdpad.jpg
CZ-2 pad
zcz2eng.jpg
CZ-2 engine
lm3a2.jpg
LM-3A
Long March LM-3A launch vehicle on the launch pad.
cz3bfail.jpg
CZ-3B failure
lm3bs2.jpg
LM-3B Cutaway
Cutaway view of LM-3B launch vehicle.
czfam2.jpg
CZ Family
Credit: © Mark Wade
Chinese orbital launch vehicle. China's first ICBM, the DF-5, first flew in 1971. It was a two-stage storable-propellant rocket in the same class as the American Titan, the Russian R-36, or the European Ariane. The DF-5 spawned a long series of Long March ("Chang Zheng") CZ-2, CZ-3, and CZ-4 launch vehicles. These used cryogenic engines for upper stages and liquid-propellant strap-on motors to create a family of 12 Long-March rocket configurations capable of placing up to 9,200 kg into orbit. In 2000 China began development of a new generation of expendable launch vehicles using non-toxic, high-performance propellants with supposedly lower operating costs. However these encountered development delays, and it seemed the reliable Long March series of rockets would continue in operational use for nearly fifty years before being replaced.

Tsien Hsue-Shen, America's leading theoretician in rocket and high-speed flight theory, returned to his native China in 1955. He assisted in negotiation of a 1956 agreement with the Soviet Union for transfer of rocket and nuclear technology to China, including training of Chinese students at Russian universities. However building rocket technology in China was a long process. Achieving the indigenous technologies in metallurgy, machinery, and electronics was an enormous task The Russians provided an R-2 rocket, an improved version of the V-2, as a starting point. But in 1960 the Soviet government discontinued further cooperation with China. Nevertheless later that year Tsien launched the first Chinese-built R-2.

Chinese political upheavals - the Great Leap Forward, the Cultural Revolution, Tsien's backing of the disgraced Lin Biao - further delayed progress. Nevertheless by 1971 China had tested its first ICBM (the DF-5). China's space industry developed new cryogenic engines and used a modular approach to create a family of 12 Long-March rocket configurations based on the CZ-2 design capable of placing up to 9,200 kg into orbit. China launched 27 foreign-made satellites in 1985-2000. However then a US embargo over improper technology transfer and collapse of the MEO satellite market led to a sharp reduction in commercial launches. China established three land-locked launch sites to reach various orbits. These were Jiuquan, for launch to mid-inclination orbits, Xichang for launch to geosynchronous orbit, and Taiyuan for polar orbits.

In April 1992 the Chinese leadership decided that an independent manned space program could be afforded. New launch facilities were built at the Jiuquan launch site for the CZ-2F manned launch vehicle. The project culminated in the launch of China's first astronaut in 2003. China's ten-year space objectives established in 2000 included development of a new generation of expendable launch vehicles using non-toxic, high-performance propellants with lower operating costs. However these encountered development delays, and it seemed the reliable Long March series of rockets would continue in operational use for nearly fifty years before being replaced.

Failures: 10. Success Rate: 92.48%. First Fail Date: 1973-09-18. Last Fail Date: 1996-02-14. Launch data is: continuing.

Status: Active.
First Launch: 1971.09.10.
Last Launch: 2008.12.23.
Number: 122 .

More... - Chronology...


Associated Countries
Associated Spacecraft
  • Shuguang 1 Chinese manned spacecraft. Cancelled 1972. Shuguang-1 (Dawn-1) was China's first manned spacecraft design. The two-man capsule would have been similar to the American Gemini capsule and been launched by the CZ-2 booster. More...
  • JSSW Chinese military surveillance satellite. 6 launches, 1973.09.18 (JSSW 1) to 1976.11.10 (JSSW 6). Mysterious early Chinese satellite, orbited by the cancelled FB-1 launch vehicle. More...
  • FSW Chinese military surveillance satellite. 24 launches, 1974.11.05 (FSW-0) to 2006.09.09 (SJ-8). More...
  • SJ Chinese communications technology satellite. First launch 1979.07.28. SJ (Shijian) series were Chinese scientific research, technological experiment and military operational satellites of a variety of configurations. More...
  • HS 376 American communications satellite. 56 launches, 1980.11.15 (SBS 1) to 2003.09.27 (E-Bird). Mass 654 kg at beginning-of-life in geosynchronous orbit. Spin stabilized at 50 rpm by 4 hydrazine thrusters with 136 kg propellant. More...
  • DFH-2 Chinese military communications satellite. 7 launches, 1984.01.29 (STTW-T1) to 1991.12.28 (Zhongxing-4). The DFH-2 was a spin-stabilized, drum-shaped military communications satellite with a despun antenna, a diameter of 2.1 m, and a height of 3.1 m. More...
  • FY-1 Chinese earth weather satellite. 4 launches, 1988.09.06 (FY-1A) to 2002.05.15 (SJ-6A). The Feng Yun 1 meteorological satellites were launched into sun-synchronous 900 km, 99 deg inclination orbits by CZ-4 boosters from Taiyuan. More...
  • FS-1300 American communications satellite bus. Operational, first launch 1989.06.05. More...
  • HS 601 American communications satellite bus. First launch 1990.01.09. 3-axis unified ARC 22 N and one Marquardt 490 N bipropellant thrusters, Sun and Barnes Earth sensors and two 61 Nms 2-axis gimbaled momentum bias wheels. More...
  • Badr Pakistani communications technology satellite. 3 launches, 1990.07.16 (Badr-A) to 2008.07.07 (Badr B). Pakistani experimental series with a variety of payloads. More...
  • Freja Swedish earth magnetosphere satellite. 2 launches, 1992.10.06 (Freja) and (Freja). Freja was designed to image the aurora and measure particles and fields in the upper ionosphere and lower magnetosphere. More...
  • AS 7000 American communications satellite. 13 launches, 1993.12.16 (Telstar 401) to 1998.06.18 (Intelsat 805). 3-axis stabilized. Two large solar panels with 1-axis articulation. More...
  • DFH-3 Chinese military communications satellite using indigenous technologies. Operational, first launch 1994.02.08. More...
  • AS 2100 American communications satellite. Operational, first launch 1996.09.08 (GE 1). Cost per satellite $100 million for the spacecraft including ground support equipment, but not including launch costs. 3-axis stabilized. More...
  • LM 700 American communications satellite. 98 launches, 1997.05.05 (Iridium 8) to 2002.06.20 (Iridium SV98 ). The LM 700 had its first use in the Iridium system, a commercial communications network comprised of a minimum of 66 LEO spacecraft. More...
  • FY-2 Chinese earth weather satellite. 5 launches, 1997.06.10 (FY-2A) to 2008.12.23 (FY-2C). The Feng Yun 2 spin-stabilized geosynchronous meteorological spacecraft was slightly more massive than China's DFH-2 communications satellite. More...
  • SACI Brazilian technology satellite. 2 launches, 1999.10.14 (SACI 1) and 1999.12.11 (SACI-2). INPE experimental scientific satellites; carried a magnetometer, particle detectors and an atmospheric experiment. More...
  • ZY Chinese earth land resources satellite. 6 launches, 1999.10.14 (ZY-1) to 2007.09.19 (ZY-2C). From 1985 China and Brazil jointly developed a sun synchronous imaging satellite bus, the Zi Yuan-1 (Resouce-1) based on the Shi Jian 3 design. More...
  • Shenzhou Chinese manned spacecraft. Operational, first launch 1999.11.19. The Chinese Shenzhou manned spacecraft resembled the Russian Soyuz spacecraft, but was of larger size and all-new construction. More...
  • FH-1 Chinese military communications satellite. 2 launches, 2000.01.25 (Zhongxing-22) to 2006.09.12 (Zhongxing 22A). In May 1999 Aviation Week reported that a new communication satellite, Fenghuo-1 (FH-1), would be launched by a CZ-3A by the end of 1999. More...
  • Beidou Chinese navigation satellite. Operational, first launch 2000.10.30. Beidou ('Big Dipper') was the satellite component of an independent Chinese satellite navigation and positioning system. More...
  • HY-1 Chinese earth land resources satellite. 2 launches, 2002.05.15 (Hai Yang 1) to 2007.04.11 (Haiyang 1B). More...
  • Double Star Chinese earth magnetosphere satellite. 2 launches, 2003.12.29 (Tan Ce 1) to 2004.07.25 (Tan Ce 2). Double Star was a joint ESA - China project to supplement ESA's Cluster satellites in characterizing the earth's magnetosphere. More...
  • Shiyan Chinese civilian surveillance satellite. 2 launches, 2004.04.18 (Tansuo 1) to 2008.11.05 (Shiyan Weixing 3). The first 'Experiment Satellite', with a mass of 204 kg, was China's first transmission-type small satellite capable of stereo mapping. More...
  • OlympicSat Chinese technology satellite. One launch, 2004.04.18, Naxing 1. It was announced in July 2001 would China will launch two small satellites on one rocket. The first would be an engineering test satellite developed by Tsinghua University. More...
  • SJ-6 Chinese military naval signals reconnaisance satellite. Operational, first launch 2004.09.08. More...
  • Spacebus 4000 European communications satellite bus. Operational, first launch 2005.02.03. The Spacebus 4000 represented a new larger platform to meet customer demand. More...
  • Yaogan Chinese synthetic aperture radar military surveillance radar and ELINT satellite. Operational, first launch 2006.04.26. More...
  • DFH-4 Large Chinese communications satellite bus using a blend of Chinese and subcontracted European technologies. Operational, first launch on 2006.10.28 (Xinnuo 2). More...
  • Zheda Pixing Chinese technology satellite. Experimental microelectronics research picosatellite. Launched 2007.05.25, More...
  • Chang'e Chinese unmanned lunar orbiter. Two launched, 2007.10.24 and 2010.10.01. Originally announced in March 2003 with the first spacecraft to reach the moon by the end of 2005. More...
  • FY-3 Chinese new generation polar orbit weather satellite. Operational, first launched 2008.05.27. The FY-3 was equipped with new global, all-weather, multi-spectral, three-dimensional sensors. More...
  • HJ-1 Chinese civilian surveillance satellite. 2 launches, 2008.09.06 (Huan Jing-1A) to 2008.09.06 (Huan Jing-1B). More...
  • Ban Xing Chinese technology satellite. One launch, 2008.09.25, BX-1. BanXing (companion satellite) subsatellite released by Shenzhou. If maneuvered away and back to the Shenzhou orbital module after the mission. More...

See also
  • CZ China's first ICBM, the DF-5, first flew in 1971. It was a two-stage storable-propellant rocket in the same class as the American Titan, the Russian R-36, or the European Ariane. The DF-5 spawned a long series of Long March ("Chang Zheng") CZ-2, CZ-3, and CZ-4 launch vehicles. These used cryogenic engines for upper stages and liquid-propellant strap-on motors to create a family of 12 Long-March rocket configurations capable of placing up to 9,200 kg into orbit. In 2000 China began development of a new generation of expendable launch vehicles using non-toxic, high-performance propellants with supposedly lower operating costs. However these encountered development delays, and it seemed the reliable Long March series of rockets would continue in operational use for nearly fifty years before being replaced. More...

Associated Manufacturers and Agencies
  • CALT Chinese manufacturer of rockets, spacecraft, and rocket engines. China Academy of Launch Vehicle Technology, Beijing, China. More...

Bibliography
  • McDowell, Jonathan, Jonathan's Space Home Page (launch records), Harvard University, 1997-present. Web Address when accessed: here.
  • McDowell, Jonathan, Jonathan's Space Report (Internet Newsletter), Harvard University, Weekly, 1989 to Present. Web Address when accessed: here.
  • Krebs, Gunter, Gunter's Space Page, University of Frankfurt, 1996. Web Address when accessed: here.
  • JPL Mission and Spacecraft Library, Jet Propulsion Laboratory, 1997. Web Address when accessed: here.
  • Chang, Iris, Thread of the Silkworm, Basic Books, New York, 1995.
  • Isakowitz, Steven J,, International Reference to Space Launch Systems Second Edition, AIAA, Washington DC, 1991 (succeeded by 2000 edition).
  • Wilson, Andrew, editor,, Jane's/Interavia Space Directory, Jane's Information Group, Coulsdon, Surrey, 1992 et al.
  • Natural Resources Defense Council, Nuclear Weapons Databook 5: British, French and Chinese Nuclear Weapons, Ballinger Publishing, 1990.
  • Grahn, Sven, Sven Grahn's Space History Pages, Web Address when accessed: here.
  • NASA GSFC Orbital Parameters,
  • McDowell, Jonathan, Launch Log, October 1998. Web Address when accessed: here.
  • China Academy of Launch Vehicle Technology, As of Nov 1998. Web Address when accessed: here.
  • National Space Science Center Planetary Page, As of 19 February 1999.. Web Address when accessed: here.
  • Chen Lan, Dragon in Space, Web Address when accessed: here.
  • Grondine, Ed, "Chinese Manned Space Program: Behind Closed Doors", Encyclopedia Astronautica, Web Address when accessed: here.
  • "Press dispatches", Xinhua News Agency, Web Address when accessed: here.
  • Isakowitz, Steven J, Hopkins, Joshua B, and Hopkins, Joseph P, International Reference to Space Launch Systems, AIAA, Washington DC, 2004.
  • Mansfield, Simon, editor, Space Daily, The best source for space news on the web.. Web Address when accessed: here.
  • Wen-Rui Hu, Editor, Space Science in China, Gordon and Breach Science Publishers, China, 1997..
  • Chen Shilu, Yan Hui, Cai Yuanli, and Zhu Xiaoping, "Progress and Development of Space Technology in China", Acta Astronautica, Vol 46, No 9, p. 559, 2000. Paper IAA-96-IAA.2.2.05 presented at the 47th IA Congress, Beijing, 1996.
  • NASA/GSFC Orbital Information Group Website, Web Address when accessed: here.
  • Space-Launcher.com, Orbital Report News Agency. Web Address when accessed: here.

Home - Browse - Contact
© / Conditions for Use