may, 2018

21may00:00Long March 4C • Queqiao

Event Details

Launch Date: May 21, 2018
Launch Window: TBA
Launch Vehicle: Long March 4C
Launch Operator: CALT
Launch Site: Xichang Satellite Launch Center
Payload: Queqiao – Chang’e 4 Relay Satellite
Satellite Type: Lunar Exploration Communications Support
Secondary Payloads: Longjiang-1 & 2


China’s robotic exploration of the Moon is expected to take its next major steps in 2018 with the Chang’e 4 lunar lander and rover mission that aims to become the first lunar surface exploration mission on the far side of the Moon. To communicate with an asset on the far side of the Moon, a dedicated communications relay post is needed in a position where it can have a direct line of sight to the lander and a ground station on Earth – the Earth-Moon Lagrange Point 2, a gravitationally stable position behind the Moon (as seen from Earth), provides a suitable position to place a relay satellite. Queqiao, a 425-Kilogram satellite built for a five-year mission, hosts a 4.2-meter dish antenna to keep up a 256 kbit/s link with the Chang’e 4 lander & rover and relaying data to the ground via S-Band. The Chang’e 4 mission targets launch around half a year after the relay satellite.


Mission Resources:

Launch Weather

? Launch Site Schedule


(Monday) 00:00 UTC


Taiyuan Satellite Launch Center