A Chinese company has successfully completed its 1st suborbital launch of a test rocket aimed at the smallsat market.
The news reports from China tout this company as private and commercial, and that might be so, but then there’s this:
China opened its space sector to private capital around 2015 and encouraged technology sharing through a civil-military integration reform policy, and the impacts are now becoming apparent.
OneSpace itself has received support from the State Administration for Science, Technology and Industry for National Defence (SASTIND), and has raised 500 million yuan (US$77.6m) through finance rounds, according to Tencent Technology.
The company might be called private, but it is also under the thumb of the Chinese government, which at any time can take it over or shut it down. At the moment the government is supporting its development, probably in the hope that China can grab some of the market of the smallsat boom expected in the next decade.