SHANGHAI, May 10 (Xinhua) -- A China-made meteorological satellite for dawn-dusk orbits has passed a factory review in Shanghai, one step closer to launching it into space, its developer said Monday.
The satellite is called Fengyun-3E (FY-3E) and was designed and built by the Shanghai Academy of Spaceflight Technology, affiliated with the China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation. It will be the world's first meteorological satellite in a dawn-dusk orbit.
A dawn-dusk orbit is a sun-synchronous orbit where the satellite tracks but never moves into the Earth's shadow. Since the satellite is close to the shadow, the part of Earth directly above it is always at sunset or sunrise, hence the name "dawn-dusk orbit."
As the sun's light is always shining on the satellite, it can make constant use of its solar panels.
Once in orbit, the FY-3E will enhance China's capabilities in meteorological forecasts, climate change responses, and disaster prevention and reduction. The FY-3E will also be capable of environmental and ecological monitoring, space weather forecasts, and early warnings, the academy said in a statement. Enditem