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Vietnam to launch Micro Dragon satellite by late 2018

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Micro Dragon satellite has been successfully built. It is waiting for the Japanese authorities to issue a safety license to be launched into space by late this year.

Micro Dragon, an earth observation satellite, weighs 50 kilograms, with the size of 50 x 50 x 50 centimetres. After being launched into space, Micro Dragon has the task of observing coastal waters to assess the quality of water, locating aquatic resources, monitoring changes in coastal waters to serve Vietnam’s aquaculture; detecting cloud coverage, aerosol properties for atmospheric correction; capturing sensor signals on the ground before transferring them quickly to distant locations on earth; and testing new material technology (Atomic oxygen, Antimony Tin Oxide Coating Solar cell).

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Micro Dragon Satellite

Micro Dragon was made by 36 Vietnamese engineers from Vietnam Space Centre, the Vietnam Academy of Science and Technology. This is a team of engineers who study space technology in Japan. Starting production in 2013, Micro Dragon was completed and tested successfully in 2017.

“The Japanese authorities are considering licensing the Micro Dragon satellite for its safety. Once licensed, the Epsilon (Japan) built by IHI Aerospace will deliver Vietnam's Micro Dragon satellite into orbit,” said Assc. Prof Pham Anh Tuan, General Director of the Vietnam Space Center.

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Vietnam’s satellite development roadmap

Micro Dragon is the next step in the process of capturing and mastering Vietnam's satellite design and manufacturing technology. Earlier, engineers at the Vietnam Space Center successfully built the super tiny Pico Dragon satellite (10 x 10 x 11.35 centimetres in size and one kilogram in weight). The satellite was launched into orbit in November 2013 and successfully operated in space. According to the roadmap, after Micro Dragon, Vietnam will make LOTUSat-1 and LOTUSat-2 satellites, two satellites with advanced radar technology which weigh some 600 kilograms, nearly 12 times heavier than the weight of MicroDragon, with a size of 1,5mx1.5mx3m, and operating lifespan in space of 5 years.

Translated by Phuong Huyen
Link to Vietnamese version

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