First Ecuadorian Satellite to be Launched from China

Ecuador’s first astronaut, Ronnie Nader, will command the launch of the nation’s first satellite this Thursday, NEE-01 Pegasus, from the JiuQuan launch center in China, at 23:13 local time.

Nader, who heads Ecuador’s Civil Space Agency (EXA) announced that a twin of the Pegasus satellite, NEE-02 Kryasaor, will be launched in August from the Baikonur launch center in Russia.

The nanosatellite is a cube measuring 10 cm by 10 cm, is equipped with 75-cm panels, weighs 1.33 kg and was designed, built and tested for a year by Ecuadorian scientists.

EXA and a private company invested nearly $80 billion USD in building Pegasus and Krysaor, while the Ecuadorian state allocated $700,000 USD for their launching, insurance, logistics and certification tests.

The satellite will be carried into orbit by an unmanned rocket and transmit live video signals to an Ecuadorian ground station, which will decode them and then upload them live to the Internet.

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