Space: November 20, 2003


On November 3rd, China launched it's 18th recoverable satellite (via a capsule with a heat shield that can survive coming back through the atmosphere, and then release a parachute for a soft landing.) That launch represented the 73rd for the Long march rocket (since 1970) and the 31st consecutive successful launch. More importantly, that launch represented the third in  less than three weeks (the others were October 15 and 21). That in itself is an important milestone, as it demonstrates China's ability to successfully handle many launches in a short period of time. Previously, only the United States and Russia were able to do that.




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