February 23, 2024

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China Launches Record Number of Satellites with Long March 8 Rocket 

With the launch of a Long March 8 rocket lifted off from the Wenchang space centre, China’s two recent launches set a new record for the largest number of satellites ever deployed by a Chinese rocket. While this added a new radar imaging capability to the country’s remote sensing fleet, it also strengthened the country’s Information and Communication Technology (ICT) capabilities.

The Long March 8 rocket was launched from the Wenchang space centre, China’s newest spaceport built on Hainan Island. The 157-foot-tall (48-meter) rocket flew south from Wenchang to head for a polar orbit at an altitude of more than 330 miles (530 kilometres).

The latest launch delivered 22 small satellites into orbit, hauling payloads to space for Earth-observing, maritime surveillance, communications and technology demonstration missions. Indeed, satellites are powerhouses for extremely long-distance communications.

The recent mission was the second flight of a Long March 8 rocket. These rockets are a considerable improvement from their predecessors, namely, the older Long March 2, Long March 3 and Long March 4 rocket families. What sets them apart is this new generation of Chinese satellite launchers burn non-toxic kerosene and hydrogen fuels, replacing the noxious mix of hydrazine and nitrogen tetroxide propellants used on older models.

Launching over a dozen satellites at one time is tricky. The control team on the ground must ensure each spacecraft would not collide with one another after reaching orbit. To do that, the 22 Chinese satellites were deployed from the Long March 8’s second stage at 12 distinct carefully-planned predetermined times.

The satellites — each over three metric tons in mass and about the size of a household oven — are designed for land imaging, and can be used for geological monitoring, tracking earthquakes, landslides, and other changes in land surfaces, China Academy of Space Technology (CASC) disclosed in a statement. Founded in 1968, CASC is the Asian nation’s main spacecraft development and production facility.

A satellite sends and receives signals using a transponder. In that sense, they are state-of-the-art ICT technology. Traditionally, they orbit the Earth and can be used for many jobs. This is reflected by the 22 satellites recently by China and what they monitor. Examples are:

  • Wenchang 1-01 and Wenchang 1-02: oceanography and natural resource
  • Chaohu 1 and Tianqi 19: for Internet of Things (IoT)
  • Starera 17, Phospherus 1: Earth-imaging mission
  • Thor Smart Satellite: scientific research

On 4 October 1957, the Soviet Union launched the world’s first artificial satellite, Sputnik 1. Since then, about 8,900 satellites from more than 40 countries have been launched. According to a 2018 estimate, about 5,000 remained in orbit. Of those, about 1,900 were operational, while the rest had exceeded their useful lives and become space debris.

The majority of the satellites available today come from the United States which harbours nearly 3,000 satellites. China and Russia have the second and third most satellites with  499 and 169 in numbers respectively. China has been progressively leading the way when it comes to digital transformation. This latest feat involving satellite launches attests to that.

Just recently, China hosted the 2022 Winter Paralympics in Beijing. Its technological advances are clearly setting the pace in the ICT world. But as OpenGov Asia reported, what is becoming increasingly obvious is the games helped unify people of all races and abilities – thanks to technology

PARTNER

Qlik’s vision is a data-literate world, where everyone can use data and analytics to improve decision-making and solve their most challenging problems. A private company, Qlik offers real-time data integration and analytics solutions, powered by Qlik Cloud, to close the gaps between data, insights and action. By transforming data into Active Intelligence, businesses can drive better decisions, improve revenue and profitability, and optimize customer relationships. Qlik serves more than 38,000 active customers in over 100 countries.

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CTC Global Singapore, a premier end-to-end IT solutions provider, is a fully owned subsidiary of ITOCHU Techno-Solutions Corporation (CTC) and ITOCHU Corporation.

Since 1972, CTC has established itself as one of the country’s top IT solutions providers. With 50 years of experience, headed by an experienced management team and staffed by over 200 qualified IT professionals, we support organizations with integrated IT solutions expertise in Autonomous IT, Cyber Security, Digital Transformation, Enterprise Cloud Infrastructure, Workplace Modernization and Professional Services.

Well-known for our strengths in system integration and consultation, CTC Global proves to be the preferred IT outsourcing destination for organizations all over Singapore today.

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Planview has one mission: to build the future of connected work. Our solutions enable organizations to connect the business from ideas to impact, empowering companies to accelerate the achievement of what matters most. Planview’s full spectrum of Portfolio Management and Work Management solutions creates an organizational focus on the strategic outcomes that matter and empowers teams to deliver their best work, no matter how they work. The comprehensive Planview platform and enterprise success model enables customers to deliver innovative, competitive products, services, and customer experiences. Headquartered in Austin, Texas, with locations around the world, Planview has more than 1,300 employees supporting 4,500 customers and 2.6 million users worldwide. For more information, visit www.planview.com.

SUPPORTING ORGANISATION

SIRIM is a premier industrial research and technology organisation in Malaysia, wholly-owned by the Minister​ of Finance Incorporated. With over forty years of experience and expertise, SIRIM is mandated as the machinery for research and technology development, and the national champion of quality. SIRIM has always played a major role in the development of the country’s private sector. By tapping into our expertise and knowledge base, we focus on developing new technologies and improvements in the manufacturing, technology and services sectors. We nurture Small Medium Enterprises (SME) growth with solutions for technology penetration and upgrading, making it an ideal technology partner for SMEs.

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HashiCorp provides infrastructure automation software for multi-cloud environments, enabling enterprises to unlock a common cloud operating model to provision, secure, connect, and run any application on any infrastructure. HashiCorp tools allow organizations to deliver applications faster by helping enterprises transition from manual processes and ITIL practices to self-service automation and DevOps practices. 

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IBM is a leading global hybrid cloud and AI, and business services provider. We help clients in more than 175 countries capitalize on insights from their data, streamline business processes, reduce costs and gain the competitive edge in their industries. Nearly 3,000 government and corporate entities in critical infrastructure areas such as financial services, telecommunications and healthcare rely on IBM’s hybrid cloud platform and Red Hat OpenShift to affect their digital transformations quickly, efficiently and securely. IBM’s breakthrough innovations in AI, quantum computing, industry-specific cloud solutions and business services deliver open and flexible options to our clients. All of this is backed by IBM’s legendary commitment to trust, transparency, responsibility, inclusivity and service.

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