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China successfully launches 2 satellites from XSLC for Gravitational Wave Detection

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China successfully launches two satellites for gravitational wave detectionOn December 10, 2020, China successfully launched the Gravitational Wave High-energy Electromagnetic Counterpart All-sky Monitor (GECAM also called Huairou-1) comprising of 2 satellites for Gravitational Wave Detection from the Xichang Satellite Launch Centre (XSLC), Sichuan Province, China. The satellite was sent into orbit by a Long March-11 Rocket developed by China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC).

i.The launch is the 355th Flight of the Long March Carrier Rocket Series.

ii.The GECAM project is being carried out by Chinese Academy of Sciences.

Key Points:

i.GECAM’s two satellites are the country’s first for monitoring gravitational wave electromagnetic counterparts. Both the satellites weight about 140Kg that will orbit on opposite sides of the Earth at an altitude of about 600 km.

ii.The satellite will be useful in monitoring high-energy celestial phenomena such as Gravitational waves, gamma-ray bursts, high-energy radiation of fast radio bursts, special gamma-ray bursts and Magnetar bursts.

iii.It will be of great help to study neutron stars, black holes, compact objects and their merger processes.

iv.The satellites are capable of detecting high-energy radiation phenomena in space like solar flares, earth gamma flashes and earth electron beams.

Note – GECAM is the first of a line-up of space science missions to be launched by China in the coming five years. Other missions include the Advanced Space-based Solar Observatory, the Einstein Probe as well as the Solar wind Magnetosphere Ionosphere Link Explorer – a joint mission between CAS and the European Space Agency.

Gravitational Waves:

i.A Gravitational Wave is an invisible ripple in space produced by exploding stars and collisions between ultradense neutron stars or merging black holes.

ii.Gravitational waves will help scientists to know more about the mysteries related to the early days of the Universe’s existence.

iii.The Laser Interferometer Gravitational Wave Observatory – LIGO was built in the United States to detect Gravitational waves.

Recent Related News:

i.On September 15, 2020, China Successfully launched a solid-propellant carrier rocket from a ship in the Yellow Sea, China.

About China:

President – Xi Jinping
Currency – Renminbi (RMB)
Capital – Beijing

About China National Space Administration (CNSA):
Director – Zhang Kejian
Headquarters – Beijing, China