By the end of summer, Bhutan will have its first satellite orbiting the earth. The miniature satellite is called Bhutan-1, and weighs less than two kilograms.
Four Bhutanese studying space engineering at the Kyushu Institute of Technology (KyuTech) in Japan have been building the satellite.
Bhutan is part of a joint global multi-nations project, BIRDS-2. Along with the Philippines and Malaysia, Bhutan’s first cubesat is ready to be delivered to the Japan Space Exploration Agency or JAXA.
Today, a joint press conference was held by the three nations and KyuTech to mark the completion of the flight model.
The Secretary of the Ministry of Information and Communication, Dasho Karma Wangchuk Penjor, said space science and technology and its applications are indispensable in today’s world.
“They have become indispensable to facilitate development and also important sectors such as communications, disaster risk mitigation and management, weather reporting for agriculture, global weather monitoring and navigation. All these are impossible without space technology and its various applications,” he said.
The cubesat will be delivered to JAXA sometime in April. JAXA will then launch it to space either from Japan or the United States depending on Earth’s trajectory to the International Space Station.