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China builds “small satellite” engineering center

China wrapped up construction of a national engineering and research center on small satellites and their application in Beijing Tuesday, paving the way for large-scale development of small satellites.

“The center has a designed production capacity of six to eight small satellites. It is the largest small satellite development and experiment base in the world at present,” said an official with the center, owned by the Dongfanghong Satellite Company of the China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation.

The 16,135-sq m complex, located on Beijing’s northwestern outskirts, consists of a design center and an assembly, test and experiment center. Its business scope ranges from research to the design and assembly of small satellites.

China has launched a number of small satellites over recent years for use in scientific experiments, resource surveys, disaster alert and environment and agriculture monitoring. The latest launch was made in mid November from the Xichang Satellite Launch Center in southwest China’s Sichuan Province.