[FPSPACE] China's 4th satellite-tracking ship

Keith Gottschalk kgottschalk at uwc.ac.za
Tue Jul 19 08:05:13 EDT 2016

The puzzling part of the news report pasted below is: 

  - surely building & operating four 25 000 tonne ships costs rather more than building & launching 4 TDRS-type satellites into GSO?
China has the capability to upgrade to this, so I wonder at their antiquated choice.

- Keith.

China commissions space tracking ship as new station readied
by Staff Writers
Beijing (Sputnik) Jul 19, 2016

China's new generation of space tracking ship, the Yuanwang-7, which will perform maritime tracking of manned spaceflight Shenzhou-11 and other space missions later this year, is formally launched on July 12 after a 60-day trial period.China on Tuesday formally commissioned its next-generation Yuan Wang 7 ocean-going ship for tracking and controlling spacecraft, after a two-month trial period, Chinese media reported.
According to the China Satellite Maritime Tracking and Control Department, the vessel will be used for maritime tracking of the Shenzhou-11 manned space mission, and the Tiangong II space laboratory mission scheduled for later this year.
The department currently operates three other Yuan Wang-class ships (numbers 3, 5, and 6), based at Jiangyin on the River Yangtze, near Shanghai.
Yuan Wang 7, constructed by Jiangnan Shipbuilding, is 220 meters in length, 40 meters tall, displaces 25,000 tons, and is said to be able to can resist strong typhoons while operating 100 days at sea, the department said in a statement.

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