Microsatellite NanoDragon, a product of the Vietnam National Space Center (VNSC), is slated to be sent into orbit from Japan next month, VNSC has announced.
The satellite is expected to be launched into outer space on October 1, at 9:48 - 9:59 am Japan time or 7:48 - 7:59 am Vietnam time, from the Uchinoura Space Center in the Japanese town of Kimotsuki, Kagoshima Prefecture.
All final preparations for the satellite launch are now complete and if everything goes smoothly, NanoDragon will go into orbit as scheduled, Dr. Le Xuan Huy, deputy director of the VNSC, told Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper.
The satellite, which was sent to Japan on August 11, will be launched by an Epsilon 5 rocket, along with eight other satellites of Japan.
NanoDragon, a nano-class cubesat satellite with standard dimensions of 3U (100 x 100 x 340.5 millimeters), is expected to operate in a solar synchronous orbit at an altitude of about 560 kilometers from the earth.
The satellite can use micro-satellite beam technology to receive Automatic Identification System (AIS) signals that serve the tracking and observation of activities at sea.
NanoDragon passed all quality-control tests in Japan in early March, marking Vietnam’s step-by-step mastery of satellite technology.
A ground station to operate the satellite after launch was already constructed at the VNSC headquarters at Hoa Lac Hi-Tech Park in Hanoi.
NanoDragon is the product of a project to create a nano-scale satellite under the national space technology program during the 2016-20 period.
All stages of the project, from researching to testing the satellite’s functions, were completely carried out in Vietnam by VNSC researchers.
Before NanoDragon, the VNSC successfully built the one-kilogram PicoDragon satellite, which was launched into orbit from Japan and obtained signals in August 2013.
The VNSC later manufactured the 50-kilogram MicroDragon satellite under the guidance of Japanese experts.
This satellite was projected into space in January 2019 and sent photos to the ground station in Japan.