Beijing: China successfully has sent a French-made communication satellite into orbit with a carrier rocket launched from the southwest Xichang Satellite Launch Centre.

Monitoring data indicated that the satellite APSTAR-7 separated from the carrier rocket Long March-3B and reached its designated geostationary transfer orbit (GTO) 26 minutes after its launch at 6.27 p.m., as reported.

Produced by Thales Alenia Space for Hong Kong-based APT Satellite Company Limited, the satellite is set to replace the APSTAR-2R, a member of the APT star system currently in orbit.

APSTAR-7 is able to provide TV transmission and satellite communication services to Asia, the Middle East, Africa, Australia and Europe, as well as live TV broadcasting and trans-continental communication and broadcasting services to China, the Middle East, Central Asia and Africa.