tech2 News StaffJul 23, 2020 11:25:11 IST
China's Mars mission, Tianwen-1, has launched today, 23 July 202o at 10.12 am IST from the Wenchang Satellite Launch Center on Hainan Island in China. The mission named Tianwen-1 is the first interplanetary mission the Chinese space agency has undertaken, and the world's first Mars mission comprising of an orbiter, rover and lander.
The spacecraft was launched using China's largest carrier rocket, Long March-5, and weighed (including fuel) around 5 tonnes.
The spacecraft is expected to reach Mars around February 2021 and begin its scientific observation phase in April 2021.
The China National Space Administration (CNSA) has named the mission 'Tianwen-1' after a poem by a popular ancient poet in Chinese history, Qu Yuan.
The lander and rover will perform a soft landing on Utopia Planitia, around two to three months after it arrives to Mars. It a large plain in the largest crater – Utopia – on Mars.
— CGTN Global Watch (@GlobalWatchCGTN) July 23, 2020
This will be the second interplanetary mission that will be launched this year after the United Arab Emirates successfully launched their Hope Probe on 20 July. NASA is also planning to launch its fifth Mars rover, called Perseverance, on 30 July.
Here are some Twitter reactions that caught our attention:
Well that was a bit of an event. A bunch of space geeks around the world, all watching a sketchy bootleg feed of a big honkin' rocket for about 30seconds.
Sleep well my friends. #Tianwen1
— An Ottawa Ross (@ottaross) July 23, 2020
The #Tianwen1 launch is the oddest rocket launch I've ever watched.
— Taraustralis (@Taraustralis) July 23, 2020
What a messy broadcast! (it was unofficial)
— Rami Mandow 🏳️🌈 (@CosmicRami) July 23, 2020
— Adam Bernstein (@ABernNYC) July 23, 2020
— Karthik Naren (@nkknspace) July 23, 2020
— WeMartians Podcast (@We_Martians) July 23, 2020
Suspicions were raised about whether the launch was a success
I’m majorly suspect right now about the #Tianwen1 launch that just happened. At ~1:40, I saw what looked like debris falling but I’m hoping it was the boosters separating. Everyone starts panicking and the feed immediately cuts out.
— Laurence Tognetti, MSc 🔭🚀👽 (@ET_Exists) July 23, 2020
However, an insider reported that things are "nominal through SECO-1" as the rocket's second stage coasts towards the equator.
Chinese news agencies Xinhua News, China Daily and CGTN have also tweeted confirmations on the successful launch of the Chinese Mars mission.
China Thursday launched a Mars probe on a Long March-5 rocket from the Wenchang Spacecraft Launch Site on the coast of southern China's island province of Hainan https://t.co/g8zTQEUDeJ pic.twitter.com/sOy2Cz0Gmg
— China Xinhua News (@XHNews) July 23, 2020
— China Daily (@ChinaDaily) July 23, 2020
CGTN's reporter Wu Lei captured on Thursday the liftoff moment of #China's Long March-5 Y4 carrier rocket, alongside its #Mars probe, from the Wenchang Spacecraft Launch Site. pic.twitter.com/EnZ4SX3EFn
— CGTN (@CGTNOfficial) July 23, 2020
Find latest and upcoming tech gadgets online on Tech2 Gadgets. Get technology news, gadgets reviews & ratings. Popular gadgets including laptop, tablet and mobile specifications, features, prices, comparison.