China launched a new satellite of the BeiDou Navigation Satellite System (BDS) on Monday evening, local media reported.

The satellite, launched from the Xichang Satellite Launch Center in southwestern Sichuan Province, was sent into a geostationary orbit through a Long March-3B carrier rocket, according to state-run Xinhua news agency.

Integrated with functions of navigation and communication, the satellite will provide services for the driverless vehicles, accurate berthing of ships, as well as takeoff and landing of airplanes.

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Developed by China Academy of Space Technology, the satellite, according to Xinhua, “was only one step away from completing the whole global system”.

Laced with scientific evidence, “Global Systems” aims to provide means to engage into a reflective dialogue to support policy-making and public action and to enable civil society to collectively engage in societal action in response to global challenges like climate change, urbanization, or social inclusion.

It was in early 1990s that China started to build its navigation system which began to serve the Asia-Pacific Region in 2012. 

A total of 54 BDS-2 and BDS-3 satellites have been sent into space.

Beijing is scheduled to complete construction of the BDS constellation in May and provide high-precision, reliable positioning, navigation and timing services anywhere in the world, the news agency said.