China Launches First Rocket Designed by Private Company

CHONGQING, China, May 21, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- An OS-X rocket named "Chongqing Liangjiang Star" saw its maiden flight finish at 7:33 am on May 17 in a test field in Northwest China.

The launch of the "Chongqing Liangjiang Star" rocket, developed by OneSpace Technology, a Beijing-based private firm, marks the first time a non-state Chinese rocket has successfully entered orbit. The rocket is nine meters long and weighs 7,200 kilograms. It has a maximum altitude of 38.742 kilometers and a top speed of more than 5.7 times the speed of sound during its maiden flight which covered 273 kilometers and lasted 306 seconds.

The flight not only tested the X-series rockets' functions, but also completed certain scientific research tasks, such as verifying drag reduction and heat reduction of pneumatic struts, which will help provide technical support for future product design. It also helped verify certain test conditions like maximum height (40 km) and Mach number (4-6). The success of the flight, meanwhile, proved the effectiveness of cooperation between higher-education institutions and companies, according to Shu Chang, founder and CEO of OneSpace.

The OS-X rockets are flight carrying platforms specifically designed for aerospace technologies test. They help fill the gap in China's aviation test industry and will promote practices and applications of advanced aerospace technologies.

OneSpace Technology set up a branch in Chongqing Liangjiang New Area, which focuses on production and assembly while the Beijing headquarter centers on research and development.

The successful development of the OneSpace rocket has lifted the new area's aerospace industrial competitiveness to a new level. Chongqing Liangjiang New Area has developed a comprehensive industrial cluster with presence at general-purpose aviation, transportation aviation and aerospace. The new area will leverage the strengths of academics and industrial development to promote the sector's growth, according to Chongqing Liangjiang New Area Management Committee.

Chongqing Liangjiang New Area is the third national new area directly approved by the State Council after Shanghai's Pudong New Area and Tianjin's Binhai New Area. It is also China's first inland national open new area.

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