ISLAMABAD: Pakistan on Monday launched the two indigenously-built satellites from China’s Jiuquan Satellite Centre to meet its imagery requirements in land mapping and natural disaster management.
The Foreign Office confirmed that the satellites — Pakistan Remote Sensing Satellite-1 (PRSS-1) and Pakistan Technology Evaluation Satellite-1A (PakTES-1A) — were launched through Long March-2C rocket, at 0857 hours (PST), from a satellite centre located in Northwest China.
Terming the launch a “great achievement” for the country, Foreign Office Spokesman, Dr Muhammad Faisal said the successful implementation of PRSS-1 and PakTES-1A projects had further strengthened the space cooperation with China for future collaboration.
The Spokesman said the 1,200 kg PRSS-1 and the 285 kg PakTES-1A satellites would operate at an altitude of 640 km and 610 km, respectively, and would also enable the country in agriculture classification and assessment, urban and rural planning and water resource management.
He said the satellites would help Pakistan end its reliance on commercial satellites for environmental monitoring particularly to address the challenges of floods, drought and water shortage.
The satellites will also help assess the situation of forestation, rainfall and storage of rain water.
The PakTES-1A, indigenously designed and developed by SUPARCO’s engineers, is equipped with an optical payload, Global Positioning System (GPS) and Geographical Information System (GIS). It has a design life of three years.
President Mamnoon Hussain and Caretaker Prime Miniter Justice (retd) Nasir ul Mulk congratulated the nation on this historic event and appreciated SUPARCO’s scientists and engineers for their technical excellence and untiring efforts.
The Prime Minister assured SUPARCO of complete support for further advancement in space technology, which he termed as vital for socio-economic development and national security of Pakistan. He said the country’s scientists and engineers were the source of pride for the nation.