Sri Lanka will launch its first ever satellite into space in April, marking its entry into the global space age, officials of the Arthur C. Clarke Institute for Space Education said on Wednesday.
RAAVANA-1 is a research satellite built by two Sri Lankan students from the Peradeniya University and the Arthur C. Clarke Institute for Modern Technologies.
The satellite was designed and built at the Kyushu Institute of Technology in Japan and is 1,000 cubic centimetres in size and weighs 1.1 kilogrammes. Local media reports said RAAVANA-1 was officially handed over to the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency on February 18.
The satellite would be sent to the International Space Station on April 17, through the assistance of Cygnus-1, a spacecraft from the US.
lThe satellite is expected to fulfil five missions, including the capturing of pictures of Sri Lanka and its surrounding regions. RAAVANA-1 is expected to orbit 400 kilometres away from earth. It will have a minimum lifespan of one-and-half years.