China is taking the space sector to new heights

China is taking the space sector to new heights

CAS Space is a private Chinese company developing a family of launch vehicles and a suborbital transport system targeting three key segments of the space access market. The goal is to become the world leader in space access, by offering competitive services in international markets. Andrew Yang, Head of International Affairs at CAS Space, answers our questions and explains CAS Space’s strategy and ambitions.

In the era of the New Space, the space sector has undergone a real revolution and profound changes over the past twenty years, making access to space easier and more economical. While previously launched services were mainly provided by government actors, new private players have entered the market and joined them in introducing new business models focused on flexibility, innovation and greater decision-making. They all expect strong growth, especially in demand for the launch of small satellites and constellations.

China has not been left out in this development, with a proliferation of launch projects and an increase in the power of private players. An example of this trend is CAS Space, a joint venture founded in 2018 in which the Institute of Mechanics of the Chinese Academy of Sciences is a major shareholder. Independent from the Chinese Academy of Sciences, CAS Space does not benefit from support for state-owned enterprises.

During the last one Paris air showIn June 2023, we had the opportunity to visit the CAS Space stand and meet its representative, Andrew Yang, Head of International Affairs, who presented us with the company’s activities and its range of launch vehicles. We recently had the opportunity to catch up with him on his company’s news, future prospects and programs currently in development.

Following a successful 2022 commissioning of Kinetica 1, a four-stage launch vehicle powered entirely by solid fuel, CAS Space has “ plans four more launches in 2024, following a successful maiden flight in January of Kinetica 1, where five Taijing satellites were launched into orbit “. The next launch is scheduled for March.

CAS room « is also continuing the development of Kinetica 2, a two-stage, 53-meter high launch vehicle, the first flight of which is scheduled for August 2025 “. Immediately at approximately 628 tons of takeoff, Kinetica 2 can carry 7.8 tons of SSO and up to 12 in in its non-reusable configuration. For its demonstration flight, Kinetica 2 will use the “ low-cost cargo transport system developed together with our partners for the Chinese manned space program CAS Space is the first commercial company to participate in Chinese space station resupply missions.

With its range of launch vehicles, the CAS Space company is well positioned to meet the needs of specific markets, mainly those related to the orbiting and renewal of constellations, but also shared launches, mainly for the scientific and academic world.

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