Over the weekend, China’s OneSpace startup launched a rocket from the Gobi Desert, and the entire thing was captured by a satellite orbiting 332 miles above Earth.
OneSpace was testing the solid-fueled booster of its OS-X1 rocket, according to the GB Times. The rocket took off from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Centre and eventually reached a suborbital altitude of 21.7 miles. The launch was filmed by China’s Jilin-1 satellite and then posted to Sina Weibo (“China’s Twitter”) and Twitter. (Similarly, last year, a satellite caught sight of a Soyuz launch in Kazakhstan.)
OneSpace is one of China’s few private spaceflight companies in an industry dominated by the government’s space agency. OneSpace CEO Shu Chang told state-run news outlet China Daily that he wants the company to be “one of the biggest small-satellite launchers in the world” and that it plans to perform 10 launches in 2019.
Back in May, OneSpace became the first private Chinese space company to launch a rocket. However, both of its tests have been suborbital. It plans to launch its first orbital flight later this year.