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DubaiSat-1 Heads into Orbit

Martin Croucher
Filed on July 31, 2009

DUBAI - Engineers were celebrating the successful launch of the UAE’s first government satellite last night.

DubaiSat-1 took off on a Dnepr rocket from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan last night on schedule at 10.46 UAE time.

It will orbit 680km above Earth, at a speed of 27,000kph. It is expected to beam back its first images in a matter of days. The satellite was stacked in the nose cone of a converted intercontinental ballistic missile with five other satellites from around the world.

Among them will be the UK-DMC2 and Deimos-1 satellites operated by Surrey Satellite Technology Ltd — a company with several contracts in the UAE.

DubaiSat-1 was developed by a South Korean firm with the cooperation of 16 UAE engineers from the Emirates Institute of Advanced Science and Technology.

It was shipped to the former Soviet base in Kazakhstan at the beginning of July and engineers had been checking systems on board since then.

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