More setbacks for Sumbandilasat


Sumbandilasat, South Africa‘s second satellite, will no longer be launched next month, following another rescheduling by Russian launch partner, Roskosmos.

ITWeb reports Roskosmos says the launch is being delayed because the Meteor M meteorological satellite that is the main package on the Soyuz launch vehicle (space rocket) is not yet ready. Sumbandilasat is the secondary payload.

No final dates for lift off have been set.

The low-orbit satellite, which is the second to be launched by SA, is scheduled to be blasted into space from Baikonur, Kazakhstan.

Sumbandilasat left SA for Russia in June. It arrived in Moscow on June 10 and Baikonur on June 17. Launch was scheduled for late August.

The launch of microsatellite has been delayed numerous times since December 2006, when it was to have been fired from a submarine near the northern Russian naval base of Murmansk.

The DST last month told Parliament it was seeking to revive SA`s space launch programme, terminated in the 1990s in the next five to ten years.