China’s ambitious space program suffered a setback today, as it has failed in the launch of its second heavy-lift carrier rocket ‘Long March-5 Y2’. The launch failed, as an abnormality was detected during flight. The rocket had blasted off at 7:23 pm (local time) from Wenchang Space Launch Center in southern province of Hainan, but an abnormality was detected during flight. Chinese space scientists are currently investigating the failed launch to identify the root cause of the problem. The rocket was supposed to launch the heaviest Shijian-18 satellite. China had planned to use this rocket for its lunar mission to collect samples from the lunar surface.
The Long March-5 rocket has been designed to carry a payload of around 25 tons into low Earth orbit and 14 tons in geostationary orbit. This was a significant improvement over the earlier models of Long March series. The rocket is quite advanced since it utilizes environmentally friendly fuels such as kerosene, liquid hydrogen, and liquid oxygen. This is much better than highly toxic propellants normally used by conventional rockets.