China launches new batch of Yaogan reconnaissance satellites


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HELSINKI — China added to its recent flurry of reconnaissance satellite launches early Sunday, sending three new Yaogan-39 spacecraft into orbit. A hypergolic Long March 2D rocket lifted off at 12:13 a.m. Eastern (0413 UTC) Sept. 17, rising into overcast skies above the Xichang Satellite Launch Center in southwest China. The China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC) confirmed launch success around half an hour after liftoff, revealing the payload to be a Yaogan-39 satellite. Like the first Yaogan-39 series launch Aug. 31 however, the mission carried a trio of satellites. Four objects from the launch were tracked in roughly...