Status: Active. First Launch: 2013-09-25. Last Launch: 2014-11-21. Number: 2 .
|Kuaizhou 2 Earth observation satellite operated by, China. Launched 2014. Used Kuaizhou bus.|
First launch of China's Kuaizhou small quick-response launch vehicle. "Kuaizhou" means "Swift Boat". The solid propellant vehicle is thought to be built by CASIC in collaboration with the Harbin Institute of Technology and may be a derivative of the DF-21 family, like the failed KT-1 launch vehicle of 2002-2003. Development of the rocket began in 2010. The satellite's initial orbit was 275 x 293 km x 96.7 deg, raised on 27 September to 299 x 306 km. The satellite payload is operated by the State Remote Sensing Center. The satellite maneuvered following launch: its initial 275 x 293 km orbit, was raised on September 27 to 299 x 306 km. The orbit decayed to 279 x 288 km and then was raised on October 17 to 288 x 321 km; after a further decay another reboost on November 1 restored the orbit to 290 x 317 km. The third reboost on November 19 raised the orbit from 267 x 294 km to 287 x 322 km.
Second launch of the Chinese 2nd Artillery's operationally responsive Kuaizhou (Swift Boat) launch vehicle with a military payload. Kuaizhou 1 was launched to a similar sun synchronous orbit with 11:00 local time of the descending node in September 2013; after regular maintenance burns for a year, during October 2014 Kuaizhou 1's orbit was raised to 365 x 390 km. Kuaizhou-2 was in a sun synchronous orbit; 1300 GMT local time of the descending node.