China has successfully completed the first test flight of a reusable submarine spacecraft. The vehicle, which took off on Friday, returned the same day, according to the China Aerospace Science and Technology Institute (CSC), which built the spacecraft.
The spacecraft was launched from the Jiguan Satellite Launch Center in northwest China. The spacecraft landed at an airport in Mongolia. Without giving further details about the spacecraft or test, the CSC asserted that the first mission was a complete success. Experts say the spacecraft could be used as a satellite if needed. It is capable of flying at an altitude of 100 km above the ground.
Last year, CSC announced plans to build a reusable spacecraft. China aims to build spacecraft that can fly like conventional aircraft. This spacecraft can reach any corner of the earth within an hour.
Last year, China said there would be several innovations in its reusable spacecraft. China has compared its spacecraft to a Boeing X-37B self-propelled spacecraft built for the US Air Force. The X37-B is capable of staying in space for long periods of time and returning to Earth on the runway after work. However, China has not released the name, technical details or footage of its spacecraft.
English summary: China successfully completes first flight test of reusable Surbitre vehicle, which could land like an airplane