UAE launches its first earth observation satellite | world | Hindustan Times
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UAE launches its first earth observation satellite

world Updated: Jul 30, 2009 21:56 IST

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The DubaiSat-1, the United Arab Emirates' (UAE) first earth observation satellite launched early on Thursday morning from Kazakhstan, has reached its desired position in the earth's orbit, WAM news agency reported.

The 'eye in the sky' satellite has achieved optimal position in orbit around the earth and has successfully connected with the Emirates Institution for Advanced Science and Technology (EIAST) earth observation station in Dubai, the report said, quoting officials.

"With the blessing of Allah, the launch process was completely successful, and DubaiSat-1 is now carrying the UAE's flag into space," said a jubilant Ahmed Al Mansoori, director general of EIAST.

"DubaiSat-1 is undoubtedly a sterling addition to the UAE's strategic accomplishments and what we have achieved so far can be attributed to the hard work and dedication of our national engineers and scientists," he said.

Comparing the achievement with the moon landing, Al Mansoori said: "While the moon landing was a huge leap for humanity, DubaiSat-1 is a huge leap for the UAE's science and technology initiatives, and for our nation's aspirations."

"The satellite will orbit 680 km above the earth with an orbital speed of 27,000 km per hour," he added.

The satellite was launched from Kazakhstan's Baikonour launching ground at 10:40 pm (UAE time) on Wednesday under the supervision of UAE engineers and scientists, who are responsible for more than a third of the project's implementation.

The EIAST confirmed that scientists at the Dubai earth observation station were able to stabilize DubaiSat-1 in its desired position and deployed its solar panels, which will power the satellite for the next five years.

The EIAST will organise a press conference on August 4 to inform the details of the progress and functioning of the satellite.