BEIJING -- Chinese engineers plan to develop a new solid-fueled rocket with greater carrying capacity than the current model Long March 11 rocket, revealed China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation sources.
The upgraded carrier rocket, called the Long March 11A, will be designed for both land and sea launches, and its cost is calculated at $10,000 per kg of payload.
According to the corporation, the design work is slated to complete this year, and the rocket is scheduled to embark on its maiden flight in 2022.
The Long March 11, mainly used for launching micro-satellites, is currently the only solid-fueled model Long March carrier rocket and China's first sea-launched rocket. It has a capacity of 500 kg for sun-synchronous orbit at an altitude of 500 km.
Its latest launch mission was completed last Saturday from the Xichang Satellite Launch Center in southwestern Sichuan province, which sent two technology experiment satellites into the space.