Vietnam plans to launch its first remote sensing satellite by 2012, the local newspaper Vietnam News Agency reported Friday. The country is now carrying out its satellite-launching project, worth about 100 million U.S. dollars.
The announcement was made on Thursday by chairman of the national Research Program on Space Science and Technology NguyenKhoa Son at the 2008 Asia-Pacific Regional Space Agency Forum (APRSAF-15).
Currently, Vietnam still has to buy images taken by satellites of foreign countries for the purpose of forecasting weather, protecting the environment and studying natural resources.
“When the VNREDSAT-1 is operational by 2012, Vietnam will be able to take photographs of the Earth from outer space, which will help Vietnam improve the efficiency of natural resources management, environmental protection and disaster prevention,” said Son.
Capital investment for the project would mostly come from Official Development Assistance (ODA), and will be used to manufacture, launch, and control the satellite, build a control station for the satellite, transfer technology and train experts, said Son.
Vietnam is seeking more foreign partners who can provide both capital and technical assistance so that the pre-feasibility research can be conducted in the near future, according to Son.
Vietnam successfully launched its first telecommunication satellite VINASAT-1 in April, 2008.
Source: Xinhua News Agency