China’s OneSpace Launches Suborbital Booster

OneSpace launched the OS-X1 suborbital rocket on Friday from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in another step toward orbital flights for the Chinese commercial launch company, according to media reports.

Gbtimes reports the solid-fuel Chongqing Liangjiang Star booster reached an altitude of about 35 kilometer during a 3m 20s flight. The first flight of the suborbital rocket was conducted in May.

The flight was captured from space by the Jilin-1, which was passing overhead at the time.

The suborbital flights are testing technology for the company’s larger OS-XM orbital booster. The company is planning a flight test of that rocket by the end of the year.

The flight came two days after Chinese rival iSpace launched its Hyperbola-1Z suborbital rocket from Jiuquan. iSpace also has plans for an orbital launch vehicle and a space plane.

A third commercial launch firm, Landspace,  plans to launch the orbital Zhuque-1 rocket next month.

  • Andrew Tubbiolo

    That trajectory looks more like a surface to air missile than a sounding rocket. Was it guided, or only stabilized?

  • ThomasLMatula

    They cut off the view from space early. Wonder if it landed in a location they didn’t want to show.

  • Andrew Tubbiolo

    I’m not so sure that was from a satellite, there was no apparent motion of the scene due to the mismatch between the Earth’s surface and the camera’s ‘orbital’ frame. Rather it looks to me as if it was taken by a drone at altitude but in the same reference frame as the rocket.

  • duheagle

    Hey, SAM’s are sub-orbital too.

  • ThomasLMatula

    In the article it stated it was filmed from space by the Jilin-1.

  • Andrew Tubbiolo

    Thanks, I was expecting a faster rate between the reference frames of the Earth’s surface and the camera. In this video the net difference shows up as an apparent motion from bottom to top of the frame. I wonder if the image might be a bit synthetic where the video frames are regenerated subtracting some of this out. Later in the video you get more of the effect of the satellite approaching a direct overflight of the flight path of the rocket. So this launch was timed to allow for prime observing conditions for the satellite.

  • Ignacio Rockwill

    I thought the same thing. That pitch manuever is anomolaous for a sounding/suborbital rocket. You want those guys to go straight up.