Image credit: Arianespace
During this year’s International Astronautical Federation (IAF) Congress in Vancouver, Canada, Arianespace, the Russian Space Agency with the support of the Russian space industry and IAF, in partnership with the leading space agencies from around the world, are proposing to commemorate the first satellite launch in 1957, by orbiting a cluster of 50 nanosatellites, each representing a different country.
Each nanosat will weigh about one kilogram, and will be dedicated to a scientific experiment under the responsibility of researchers at universities or other organizations. Each nanosat will offer a design life of about two years. All 50 will be launched on a single Arianespace mission.
“Arianespace is very proud to be participating in this commemoration,” said Jean-Yves Le Gall, the company’s Chief Executive Officer. “Supporting science and research is an integral part of our assigned mission. We have already orbited some 40 auxiliary payloads of the same type we will launch in 2007. Just like 50 years ago, when the first man-made Earth satellite was launched, these nanosatellites will signal a new era for scientists worldwide.”
Original Source: Arianespace News Release