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China successfully completed its tenth launch for 2018 today, placing three Landsat-type Earth observation satellites into orbit with its Long March 4C rocket.
The leaders in the 2018 launch standings:
There have now been 29 launches in the year’s first three months, suggesting a pace that will give us about 120 launches total for the year, the most launches since the 1980s. Then, the Soviet Union was putting up a lot of rockets it could not afford and were not really practical. Now, we have some real competition and profits being made putting up satellites that fill a need. The numbers should only get higher in the coming years.