(Ecofin Agency) - Rwanda’s satellite RWASAT-1 is going to be launched into orbit in November this year, the country’s minister of ICT and innovation, Paula Ingabire, announced during a joint press conference between the Rwanda Utility and Regulatory Authority (RURA), the Ministry of ICT & Innovation, and the Japanese Embassy.
Patrick Nyirishema, RURA’s MD, said the satellite might be launched on November 18, 2019. Result of a Japan-Rwanda partnership inked on May 9, 2018, RWASAT-1 was sent to the International Space Station (ISS) on September 24.
This 10 x 10 cm CubeSat, weighing no more than 1.2 kg, officially presented on 16 May 2019 at the Transform Africa Summit, was transported by a rocket launched from the Tanegashima space center of the Japanese Aerospace Agency (JAXA).
On September 28, the cargo ship that stores RWASAT-1 was captured by the ISS robotic arm, awaiting the satellite's alignment with the selected orbit.
Designed for space research, RWASAT-1 will help the government monitor water resources, natural disasters, agriculture, and meteorology. Data collected in the sky, using the two onboard multispectral cameras, will then be transmitted to ground control centers where they will be used to make informed decisions.