CNSA managed to deliver to orbit next two satellites operating under Beidou navigational system. China plans to launch another 14 Beidou satellites before end of the 2018 and complete constellation in 2020 with 30 operational satellites.

Supported by four liquid fueled (N2O4 / UDMH) boosters Long March 3B was launched today at 05:03 UTC from Xichang Satellite Launch Center in Sichuan province. All three core stages were performing nominally according to Chinese media; Yuanzheng upper stage delivered two navigational satellites to 22000 km orbit.

Satellites launched today are BD-3 M3 and BD-3 M4 and belong to third generation Beidou satellites. Manufactured by China Academy of Space Technology (CAST) each satellite weighs 1014 kg and is powered by onboard batteries and deployable solar arrays. Satellites launched today are 5th and 6th 3rd generation Beidou spacecrafts since first their introduction in 2015.