Surrey Satellite Technology Ltd (SSTL) today announced the successful launch of KazEOSat-2, a medium resolution Earth observation satellite for the Republic of Kazakhstan, at UTC 19:11:1. The spacecraft was launched into a 630km sun-synchronous orbit on board a DNEPR rocket from Yasny in Russia.
Following confirmation of separation from the launch vehicle, the ground station at the newly built satellite operations centre in Kazakhstan’s capital city, Astana, established contact with the satellite on its first pass and commissioning of the platform is now underway, undertaken by a joint team of engineers from SSTL and Kazakhstan Gharysh Sapary.
KazEOSat-2 (formerly known as KazMRES) has a mass of 180kg and is based on the SSTL-150 platform. It will deliver 77km swath, multi-spectral images with a resolution of 6.5 metres for agricultural and resource monitoring, disaster management and land use mapping. The spacecraft is the medium-resolution element of a civil space remote sensing system that also includes the high-resolution satellite, KazEOSat-1, built by Airbus Defence and Space. The contract with SSTL also included a license agreement for non-commercial reproduction of the SSTL-150 platform in Kazakhstan.
Sir Martin Sweeting, Executive Chairman of SSTL said “We congratulate the Kazakh government on the successful launch of KazEOSat-2 and the advancement of their civil space programme. We have enjoyed working with the Kazakh engineers who took part in a space development and training programme with us during the build of their spacecraft, and we are very much looking forward to welcoming a new team of engineers from Kazakhstan to the UK next month, who will collaborate with us on the design and build of their next mission, KazSTSat.“
In a continuation of the collaboration between the two organisations, a team from SSTL has travelled to the satellite operations centre in Astana to perform initial in-orbit operations alongside Kazakh engineers. Once platform commissioning in Astana is complete, SSTL and Kazakh engineers will commission and calibrate the imaging payload from SSTL’s Mission Control operations centre in Guildford.
Surrey Satellite Technology Limited (SSTL) is the world's leading small satellite company, delivering operational space missions for a range of applications including Earth observation, science and communications. The Company designs, manufactures and operates high performance satellites and ground systems for a fraction of the price normally associated with space missions, with 600 staff working on turnkey satellite platforms, space-proven satellite subsystems and optical instruments.
Since 1981 SSTL has built and launched 42 satellites– as well as providing training and development programmes, consultancy services, and mission studies for ESA, NASA , international governments and commercial customers, with its innovative approach that is changing the economics of space.
Headquartered in Guildford, UK, SSTL is part of the Airbus Group.