China launched another satellite as part of its Beidou navigation satellite constellation at 1441 GMT on 20 April 2019.  The launch from the Xichang launch site used a Long March 3B/G2 launch vehicle to send the CAST-built Beidou 3-I1Q on a geosynchronous transfer orbit (GTO) on its way to its final destination – a highly inclined geosynchronous orbit inclined at 55 degrees relative to the equator.

Long March 3B-G2 lifts off carrying a Beidou satellite in April 2019. Courtesy: Xinhua

Once fully completed, the constellation will consist of 27 satellites in Medium Earth Orbit, three satellites in a  zero inclination Geostationary Earth Orbit at 80 degrees East 100.5 degrees East and 140 degrees East respectively, and five in highly inclined geosynchronous orbits including this one.