Thursday, 17 September 2009

ZA 002 ( SumbandilaSat) eindelik van die grond af

Source:  Engeneering News

SA satellite finally lifts off 
South Africa’s R26-million Sumbandila satellite (SumbandilaSat) has been successfully launched from the renowned Baikonur Cosmodrome by Russian space agency Roscosmos, on a Soyuz-2 rocket. The launch was at17:55 South African time on Thursday.
The rocket was placed on the launch pad early in the week, but the launch has been subject to two holds, each of 24 hours duration. The first hold was caused by a combination of bad weather and a telemetry glitch.

The second hold was the result of problems in the fuelling process, apparently caused by a leak in a pipeline or hose that needed repair or replacing. Fuelling has to be completed just 20 minutes before lift off, and the launch was aborted just 13 minutes before the scheduled launch time. The Soyuz-2 is powered by a mixture of highly refined kerosene (the fuel) and liquid oxygen as the oxidiser. Liquid oxygen has to be kept at a temperature of – 183˚ C or below. As it evaporates very easily, it cannot be stored for long.

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