Long March 3C

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Long March 3C
Drawing of Long March 3C
FunctionCarrier rocket
Country of originChina
Height54.8 metres (180 ft)[1]
Diameter3.35 metres (11.0 ft)[1]
Mass345,000 kilograms (761,000 lb)[1]
Payload to GTO3C: 3,800 kilograms (8,400 lb)[2][3]
3C/E: 3,900 kilograms (8,600 lb)
Payload to HCO2,400 kilograms (5,300 lb)[2][3]
Associated rockets
FamilyLong March
Launch history
Launch sitesLA-2 & LA-3, XSLC
Total launches17
First flight25 April 2008
Boosters (3C)
No. boosters2
Length15.33 m (50.3 ft)
Diameter2.25 m (7 ft 5 in)
Propellant mass37,700 kg (83,100 lb)
Engines1 YF-25
Thrust740.4 kN (166,400 lbf)
Specific impulse2,556.2 m/s (260.66 s)
Burn time127 s
Fueldinitrogen tetraoxide / UDMH
Boosters (3C/E)
No. boosters2
Length16.1 m (53 ft)
Diameter2.25 m (7 ft 5 in)
Propellant mass41,100 kg (90,600 lb)
Engines1 YF-25
Thrust740.4 kN (166,400 lbf)
Specific impulse2,556.2 m/s (260.66 s)
Burn time140 s
Fueldinitrogen tetraoxide / UDMH
First stage (3C)
Length23.27 m (76.3 ft)
Diameter3.35 m (11.0 ft)
Propellant mass171,800 kg (378,800 lb)
Engines4 YF-21C
Thrust2,961.6 kN (665,800 lbf)
Specific impulse2,556.5 m/s (260.69 s)
Burn time145 s
Fueldinitrogen tetraoxide / UDMH
First stage (3C/E)
Length24.76 m (81.2 ft)
Diameter3.35 m (11.0 ft)
Propellant mass186,200 kg (410,500 lb)
Engines4 YF-21C
Thrust2,961.6 kN (665,800 lbf)
Specific impulse2,556.5 m/s (260.69 s)
Burn time158 s
Fueldinitrogen tetraoxide / UDMH
Second stage
Length12.92 m (42.4 ft)
Diameter3.35 m (11.0 ft)
Propellant mass49,400 kg (108,900 lb)
Engines1 YF-24E (YF-22E (Main)
4 x YF-23C (Vernier))
Thrust742 kN (167,000 lbf) (Main)
47.1 kN (10,600 lbf) (Vernier)
Specific impulse2,922.57 m/s (298.019 s) (Main)
2,910.5 m/s (296.79 s) (Vernier)
Burn time185 s
Fueldinitrogen tetraoxide / UDMH
Third stage
Length12.38 m (40.6 ft)
Diameter3.0 m (9.8 ft)
Propellant mass18,200 kg (40,100 lb)
Engines1 YF-75
Thrust167.17 kN (37,580 lbf)
Specific impulse4,295 m/s (438.0 s)
Burn time478 s
FuelLH2 / LOX

The Long March 3C (simplified Chinese: 长征三号丙火箭; traditional Chinese: 長征三號丙火箭; pinyin: Chángzhēng Sānhào Bǐng Huǒjiàn), also known as the Changzheng 3C, CZ-3C and LM-3C, is a Chinese orbital carrier rocket. It is launched from Launch Complex 2 at the Xichang Satellite Launch Centre. A 3-stage rocket with two strapon liquid rocket boosters, it is a member of the Long March 3 rocket family, and was derived from the Long March 3B. It was designed to fill a gap in payload capacities between the Long March 3A and 3B.


It made its maiden flight on 25 April 2008, at 15:35 GMT. The payload for the first launch was the Tianlian-1 data relay communications satellite. The second carried the Compass-G2 navigation satellite, and was conducted on 14 April 2009. The third launch was made on 16 January 2010, with the Compass-G1 satellite. The fourth carrying the Compass-G3 navigation satellite was launched on 2 June 2010. On 1 October 2010, it successfully launched China's second lunar probe, Chang'e 2.

An enhanced version of the Long March 3C rocket debuted during the launch of Chang'e 5-T1 on 23 October 2014.[4] On 30 March 2015 the Yuanzheng-1 upper stage was used on top of a Long March 3C rocket for the first time.[5]

List of Launches[edit]

Flight number Date (UTC) Launch site Version Payload Orbit Result
1 April 25, 2008
LA-2, XSLC 3C Tianlian I-01 GTO Success
2 April 14, 2009
LA-2, XSLC 3C Compass-G2 GTO Success
3 January 16, 2010
LA-2, XSLC 3C Compass-G1 GTO Success
4 June 2, 2010
LA-2, XSLC 3C Compass-G3 GTO Success
5 October 1, 2010
LA-2, XSLC 3C Chang'e 2 LTO Success
6 October 31, 2010
LA-2, XSLC 3C Compass-G4 GTO Success
7 July 11, 2011
LA-2, XSLC 3C Tianlian I-02 GTO Success
8 February 24, 2012
LA-2, XSLC 3C Compass-G5 GTO Success
9 July 25, 2012
LA-2, XSLC 3C Tianlian I-03 GTO Success
10 October 25, 2012
LA-2, XSLC 3C Compass-G6 GTO Success
11 October 23, 2014
LA-2, XSLC 3C/E Chang'e 5-T1 LTO Success
12 March 30, 2015
LA-2, XSLC 3C/YZ-1 BDS I1-S GSO Success
13 February 1, 2016
LA-2, XSLC 3C/YZ-1 BDS M3-S MEO Success
14 June 12, 2016
LA-3, XSLC 3C/E Compass-G7 GTO Success
15 November 22, 2016
LA-2, XSLC 3C/E Tianlian I-04 GTO Success
16 December 24, 2018
LA-3, XSLC 3C/E TJSW-3 GTO Success
17 May 17, 2019
LA-2, XSLC 3C/E Compass-G8 GTO Success


  1. ^ a b c Mark Wade. "CZ-3C". Encyclopedia Astronautica. Archived from the original on 2008-06-01. Retrieved 2008-04-26.
  2. ^ a b "LM-3A Series Launch Vehicle User's Manual - Issue 2011" (PDF). China Great Wall Industries Corporation. Retrieved 2015-08-09.
  3. ^ a b Gunter Krebs. "CZ-3C (Chang Zheng-3C)". Gunter's Space Page. Retrieved 2008-04-26.
  4. ^ Barbosa, Rui C. (23 October 2014). "China launches lunar sample return test mission". NASASpaceflight.com. Retrieved 10 August 2015.
  5. ^ Barbosa, Rui C. (30 March 2015). "Long March 3C in secretive launch with new Upper Stage". NASASpaceflight.com. Retrieved 10 August 2015.