BEIJING, April 15 (RIA Novosti) - China has
successfully launched its second navigation satellite as part
of a project to develop its own global satellite navigation
system, the Xinhua news agency reported on Wednesday.
The Long March 3C rocket with a Beidou-G2 satellite
onboard was launched at 0:16 a.m. local time on Wednesday
(Tuesday 16:16 GMT) from the Xichang space center in the
"The successful launch of the geostationary Earth orbit
satellite was of great importance as it was the second one of
the country's satellite navigation system independent from
foreign technology," the agency said, citing an official at the
National Engineering Center of Satellite Navigation.
The satellite navigation project, named Beidou (compass),
begun in 2000, currently comprises five geostationary Earth
orbit satellites. Around 30 more satellites are expected to be
orbited by 2015, of which 10 are scheduled for launch in
Beidou currently provides navigation services within China
and neighboring region. After completion, the project would
become an equivalent of the U.S.'s Global Positioning System
(GPS), Russia's Glonass, and Europe's Galileo.