Providing technology for Egyptian satellite
Belarusian special equipment to be installed in EgyptSat, scheduled for launch in 2014
By Andrey Ampilov
The Russian Rocket and Space Corporation, Energia, has asked Belarusian Peleng to make the electro-optical equipment for the satellite. Already, the enterprise has orders to the value of about $135m: eight times more than the cost of the Belarusian spacecraft ($16m). Peleng is also providing devices for sending and processing space data from the satellite.
Egypt has launched its own satellites previously (initially using Ukrainian technology), but lacked powerful telescopes. The new device will be able to shoot with resolution almost to the metre (improving on the Belarusian satellite’s 2.1m accuracy). The future Belarusian satellite, which will replace the BKA, may even achieve 0.5 metre resolution. Of course, this raises the cost considerably, notes the Chief Engineer of Geoinformation Systems, at the NAS of Belarus, Oleg Semenov. He explains, “Transition even to one metre resolution increases the cost of the equipment more than four-fold.”
The Belarusian satellite was launched on July 22nd, 2012, from the Baikonur cosmodrome in Kazakhstan, providing full coverage of the territory of Belarus from space. This provides not only for domestic needs but allows Belarus to sell data abroad, generating revenue. Azerbaijan and Venezuela are among those most keen.