It was informed that South African Nanosatellite has been sending successfully to orbit from the ISS (International Space Station). The weight of the satellite is 2.5KG and it is the first privately owned South Africa’s nanosatellite (nSight1) to be deployed. It seems to be an orbit which revolves around the earth and capture pictures with the aid of remote sensing camera. The nSight1 was locally developed and created by SCS Space, a member of the SCS Aerospace Group. Whilst it is the first time, a private company in South Africa has planned to create and launch a satellite to space, and the South African nanosatellite was created within 6 months duration with the aid of available space infrastructure in the nation.
By welcoming the nSight1 deployment, the Department of Science & Technology related that the nation has been engaged in space research and technology for about 50 years. The first locally manufactured and designed satellite, SUNSAT, was implemented in 1999. The nSight1’s deployment follows the victorious launch of South African satellites since the nineties, including SumbandilaSat (2009), SUNSAT (1999) as well as Cape Peninsula University of Technology’s ZACUBE-1 Satellite (2013).
NSight 1 was a segment of a batch of 28 nanosatellites from 23 varying countries, implemented on 18th April 2017 from Cape Canaveral in Florida, USA. After attaining the ISS, the nanosatellites were deployed and unloaded by ISS team. The prime objectives of nSight1’s goal are to demonstrate a patented coding approach developed at Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University and to show the space capabilities of private firms in SA, stated the department. The department further linked that the South African nanosatellite is a segment of European Commission’s QB50 project.
As learned, the project was implemented to inspire the deployment and design of a network of the satellite which will study the lower thermosphere that is largely unexplored. The SCS Aerospace Group’s nSight, thus, carries the scientific instrumentation for onsight thermosphere analysis as one of its three payloads. The Von Karman Institute of Fluid Dynamics in the city of Belgium is the leading institute for the QB50 project consortium. The next nSight1 payload is recently developed SCS Gecko Imager. This is known to be an ultra-compact imager who offers RGB imaging at top frame rates, massively integrated high-speed data storage, & a compact form factor which is optimized for integration with 2 unit or bigger CubeSat frames.
The third payload of the satellite is the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University’s Patented Radiation Mitigation VHDL coding process. The University has a powerful partnership with SCS Aerospace Group in Satellite Technology, disclosed the department. It was also revealed that the SCS space ground operations team will be quite responsible for the mission control of the satellite. The process needs the establishment of the communication link and contact with the nanosatellite from the new ground station located near Houwteq in Grabouw, added the department.
Commenting, SCS space’s CEO Hendrik Burger declared that the company is highly happy to be engaged in the international project that has placed SA on the international satellite map. Moreover, the deputy director-general, Mmboneni Muofhe astonished that the satellite is the essential milestone revealing the outcome of capability setup through the Department of science & technology. Muofhe said that about 70% of the satellite is developed using satellite components offered by enterprises of SA space industry.