Zhixing-3A (, Zhixing-3 A, Zhixing No. 3 A Star)

Zhixing-3 A
Satellite name Zhixing-3A (, Zhixing-3 A, Zhixing No. 3 A Star)
Type CubeSat
Units or mass 6U
Status Reentry 2023-02-12. Was operational (Official post on Smart Satellite website on 2022-12-01)
Launched 2022-05-09
NORAD ID 54245
Deployer Tianzhou CubeSat Deployment System
Launcher Long March 7 (Tianzhou)
Deployment Deployed from Tianzhou on 2022-11-14
Entity name Smart Satellite
Institution University
Entity Academic / Education
Nation China
Manufacturer AIVT by Smart Satellite
Operator Smart Satellite

Technology demonstration for the SAR constellation.


At 1:56 on May 10, 2022, the Tianzhou-4 spacecraft carried the first commercial satellite, Zhixing-3A, into space. After quickly docking with the space station, the satellite was transferred to the on-orbit storage state. At 14:55 on November 9th, Tianzhou-4 withdrew from the space station complex and locked the 14th as the window for the safe release of satellites.

At 5:00 on November 14th, the standard temperature-controlled satellite deployment launcher developed by Aerospace Star of the Fifth Academy of China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation preheated and heated up Zhixing 3A, ended the storage state, and transferred to the flight preparation state;

6:00 At 2 minutes, after 188 days of in-orbit storage on Zhixing-3A, Tianzhou-4 implemented on-orbit release and separation, and entered the autonomous flight stage; at 6:08:33, the uplink command from Yuxing Azerbaijan station was successful; 6:14 In 54 seconds, Yuxing Jinghe Station received the first frame of telemetry information.

The satellite was released from a cubesat deployer developed by the China Academy of Space Technology (CAST), the main spacecraft maker under the China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC) and manufacturer of Tianzhou spacecraft..

The deployment was initially revealed by a commercial space firm Emposat (Hangtian Yuxing), which provides commercial satellite telemetry, tracking, and control services, with a network including facilities in China, Argentina, France, Kenya, South Africa, Samoa and more..

The satellite was developed by commercial firm Beijing Smart Satellite Space Technology Co., Ltd. The firm announced the remote sensing and radio software satellite was operational on Nov. 25 after completing on-orbit testing. 


After more than 10 days of multi-station measurement and control confirmation, the satellite measurement and control uplink and downlink are normal, the energy on the satellite is sufficient and stable, and the thermal design meets expectations. The platform function tests such as independent attitude and orbit determination, ground/sun maneuvering, and station-to-station data transmission have been completed. Others New technology verification and load performance tests have also been completed one after another, and the satellite is currently in normal operation.

Through the Zhixing-3A satellite and the Zhixing-1A satellite that was already in orbit in the early stage, Zhixing Space has fully verified the overall design of the satellite, the design of satellite affairs and attitude control software, and the design capabilities of ground operation and control software. The engineering application of the launched Zhixing X series radar satellites has laid a solid foundation.

Sources [1] [2] [3]
Photo sources [1]
COTS subsystems
  • PLATFORM - Smart Satellite
Space photos Zhixing-3 AZhixing-3 AZhixing-3 A


Last modified: 2023-06-09

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