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Vietnam's NanoDragon Satellite to Be Launched Into Orbit From Japan on Friday

To infinity, and beyond!

Tuoi Tre reports that the NanoDragon, a microsatellite created by the Vietnam National Space Center (VNSC), will be blasted into orbit by the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency this Friday.

The launch is scheduled for just before 8am Vietnam time on October 1, and will take place at the Uchinoura Space Center in Kagoshima Prefecture. Dr. Lê Xuân Huy, the VNSC's deputy director, told the news source that all pre-launch preparations have been completed with no problems.

The NanoDragon was shipped to Japan from Vietnam in early August and will hitch a ride on an Epsilon 5 rocket, along with eight small Japanese satellites.

The Vietnamese microsatellite measures 100 by 100 by 340.5 millimeters and will orbit Earth at an altitude of about 560 kilometers. It can receive Automatic Identification System (AIS) signals in order to track and observe activity off of Vietnam's coast, and will be controlled from the VNSC's headquarters in Hanoi's Hoa Lac Hi-Tech Park.

NanoDragon is the result of four years of research and development by engineers at VNSC, and it follows the PicoDragon, which weighs one kilogram and was launched into orbit by Japan in August 2013. Vietnamese experts also worked with their Japanese counterparts to build the 50-kilogram MicroDragon, which went into space in January 2019.

[Photo by the Vietnam National Space Center via VietnamPlus]

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