Dong Fang Hong 1 (DFH-1) was the first Chinese satellite. This was the first satellite launched by China on its own booster, making China the fifth nation to put a spacecraft into orbit using its own rocket. The satellite was developed under the direction of Tsien Hsue-Shen, dean of the Chinese Academy of Space Technology (CAST). The experimental satellite was a nearly spherically shaped symmetrical 72-faced polyhedron with a 1-meter diameter. It was battery-powered and carried a radio transmitter. The primary mission was to broadcast the song "Dong Fang Hong", paying tribute to Chairman Mao, and to announce the time. A total of five identical satellites were built to have backups in case of launch failures. The first satellite launched successfully.
The China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC) is the main contractor for the Chinese space program. It is state-owned and has a number of subordinate entities which design, develop and manufacture a range of spacecraft, launch vehicles, strategic and tactical missile systems, and ground equipment. It was officially established in July 1999 as part of a Chinese government reform drive, having previously been one part of the former China Aerospace Corporation. Various incarnations of the program date back to 1956.INFO WIKI