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China Launches a New Data Relay Satellite into Orbit

The launch marks the 301st mission of the Long March carrier rocket series

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Accurate Map of China. Pixabay

China sent a new data relay satellite into orbit from the Xichang Satellite Launch Centre in Sichuan Province late Sunday night.

The Tianlian II-01 satellite was launched at 11.51 p.m. (Beijing Time) by a Long March-3B carrier rocket, Xinhua news agency reported.

As the first satellite to constitute China’s second-generation data relay satellite network, the Tianlian II-01 will provide data relay, measurement and control, transmission services for manned spacecraft, satellites, carrier rockets and other non-spacecraft users.

China
The flags of Hong Kong (left) and its communist ruler China, in file photo. RFA

The Tianlian II network will be markedly more advanced in mission planning, system management and operations than the first-generation network composed of Tianlian I satellites.

The new network, with faster data transfer and higher multi-objective service capability, will play an important role in improving the transmission promptness, in-orbit security and mission flexibility for medium and low-Earth orbiting satellites and manned spacecraft.

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The satellite is developed by the China Academy of Space Technology under the China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation.

The launch marks the 301st mission of the Long March carrier rocket series. (IANS)

Next Story

Snake is the Most Probable Wildlife Animal Reservoir of Novel Coronavirus: Study

Snake was one of the animals being sold in Wuhan's Huanan Seafood Wholesale Market before its closure.

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virus Snake
Snake is the most probable wildlife animal reservoir for the novel coronavirus that had caused 17 deaths in central China's Hubei Province. (Representational Image). Pixabay

A study published on Wednesday in the Journal of Medical Virology showed that snake is the most probable wildlife animal reservoir for the novel coronavirus that had caused 17 deaths in central China’s Hubei Province.

Scientists from Peking University Health Science Center School of Basic Medical Sciences, the First affiliated Hospital of Guangxi University of Chinese Medicine, Ruikang Hospital Affiliated to Guangxi University of Chinese Medicine, Ningbo University’s School of Medicine, and Wuhan University of Bioengineering carried out a comprehensive analysis on the existing sequences of the newly identified coronavirus, the Xinhua news agency reported.

They used a method called “relative synonymous codon usage” (RSCU) bias to compare RNA sequences of different animal species.

Snake was one of the animals being sold in Wuhan’s Huanan Seafood Wholesale Market before its closure. The market is believed to be related to most of the infected cases.

Snake
Snake was one of the animals being sold in Wuhan’s Huanan Seafood Wholesale Market before its closure. The market is believed to be related to most of the infected cases. Pixabay

Results obtained from the analyses suggested that the new virus 2019-nCoV appeared to be a recombinant virus between the bat coronavirus and an origin-unknown coronavirus.

The recombination occurred within the viral spike glycoprotein, which recognizes cell surface receptor. Additionally, their findings suggested that snake is the most probable wildlife animal reservoir for the 2019-nCoV based on its RSCU bias resembling snake compared to other animals.

Taken together, the research results suggested that homologous recombination within the spike glycoprotein may contribute to cross-species transmission from snake to humans.

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Glycoprotein is a group of conjugated proteins containing small amounts of carbohydrates.

Chinese health authorities have posted the full genome of 2019-nCoV in the genetic sequence database of U.S. National Institutes of Health and the Global Initiative on Sharing All Influenza Data, according to U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). (IANS)