Brazil and China launch satellite together

TAIYUAN (BDCi) – A satellite designed to observe the Earth has been launched in a joint project by the Brazilian and Chinese governments.

The CBERS 4 spacecraft took off on Saturday (6) from the Taiyuan space center in the capital of the northern Shanxi province at 11:26 a.m. local time.

A satellite identical to the CBERS 4 failed to launch about a year ago.

The satellite, which is the fifth in a series of China-Brazil Resources Satellites, was boosted into orbit roughly 460 miles above Earth by a Long March 4B rocket.

CBERS 4 weighs 2.3 tons and is equipped with four cameras for photographing the Earth in both visible and infrared wavelengths. Due to its orbit, the satellite is able to observe the same location in low resolution at least once every day.

The joint mission is expected to last three years and in that time, CBERS 4 will follow wildfires and deforestation in the Amazon, observe the crop yields and trends in land use, manage water resources and study urban development.

A sixth CBERS satellite from Brazil and China is tentatively set to launch in 2017.