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China to Develop 5 More Oceanic Satellites

China will develop five more oceanic satellites in the medium term, China's top ocean research official said in Taiyuan, Shanxi Province, on Wednesday.


Sun Zhihui, director of the State Oceanic Administration, made the remarks after the successful launch of self-developed "Haiyang-1B" oceanic satellite from the Taiyuan Satellite Launch Center on Wednesday.


China plans to have a system consisting of ocean color remote sensing satellites, ocean dynamic environment satellites and ocean surveillance satellites.


The "Haiyang-1B" is an ocean color remote sensing satellite. China will launch the "Haiyang-2" satellites, or ocean dynamic environment satellites, in 2009 and is currently analyzing customer demand for the "Haiyang-3" satellites, or ocean surveillance satellites, Sun said.


Satellite ocean remote sensing technology plays a critical role in oceanic research, maritime environment and disaster relief and other academic research.


There are more than 30 oceanic satellites in orbit around the planet.


Sun said oceanic satellites are urgently needed in China to develop the country's marine economy, providing marine disaster early warning and safeguarding the nation's legitimate marine rights.


"Although China is one of only five countries in the world able to independently launch ocean color remote sensing satellites, we still lag behind developed countries in this field," said Sun.


(Xinhua News Agency April 11, 2007)

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