• Countdown begins

    Countdown begins

    Senegal’s plans to go to space are on the verge of lift-off.

    It plans to launch its first nanosatellite, GaindéSat-1A, on 9 July. The cube satellite was built over two years by Senegalese engineers and technicians as a joint project between Senegal’s Ministry of Higher Education, Research and Innovation and the University of Montpellier in France.

    The 1U-type satellite has already been delivered to Exolaunch in Germany and integrated into its Expod NOVA deployer, according to a Space in Africa report.

    The deployer, the size of a small suitcase, will launch aboard the European Space Agency’s Ariane 6 rocket from the Spaceport in French Guiana, on the rocket’s maiden voyage, reports Space.com.

    The GaindéSat-1A will collect environmental data from measuring stations and transmit it to the Diamniadio control centre near Dakar for analysis, contributing to firefighting efforts, flood management, erosion control and advancing agricultural development. In addition, the satellite will begin capturing images of Senegal. While their resolution will be limited, they will serve as a proving ground for various applications.

    11  June 2024
    Image: Flickr