Earth receives first signal from Vietnamese micro satellite

Wednesday, Nov 20, 2013 15:29

Vietnamese micro satellite Pico Dragon in the space. It transmitted its first signal to the Viet Nam National Satellite Centre on November 20. Photos courtesy of VNSC
HA NOI (Biz Hub) — Vietnamese micro satellite Pico Dragon transmitted its first signal to the Viet Nam National Satellite Centre (VNSC) early in the morning on November 20.

The VNSC ground station received the signal between 12:36 a.m. and 12:42 a.m. (local time) when the satellite crossed over Viet Nam.

Japanese ground stations at Nihon University and the Kyushu Institute of Technology also reported receiving the signal from Pico Dragon.

The satellite has begun the various steps of its booting process, such as checking conditions and collecting space environment data, to ensure the conditions are right for releasing its antenna and initiating its radio transceiver system. It has been continuously transmitting the message 'PICO DRAGON VIETNAM'.

At present, VNSC engineers are preparing to receive the satellite's next signal; worldwide ground stations will remain alert for the signal requesting further support.

Pico Dragon, developed by Vietnamese engineers and researchers at the VNSC, was successfully shipped to the International Space Station (ISS) on a Japanese HTV-4 cargo spacecraft on August 4.

The tiny satellite was launched into space from the ISS at 7:17 p.m. on November 19, along with two American satellites.

With its first transmission, Pico Dragon has become the first Viet Nam-made satellite to operate successfully in space. — VNS

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