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Sri Lanka’s first satellite launched today

Sri Lanka’s first satellite ‘Raavana 1’ was launched at 2.16 am today (18), officially marking Sri Lanka’s entrance to the global space age.

Three satellites including Raavana 1 were launched from the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport at NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility on the Eastern Shore of Virginia, USA.

The Antares rocket left the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport to the International Space Station (ISS) carrying the Cygnus cargo spacecraft, which contained three satellites including Raavana 1 at 4.46 pm EDT (Sri Lanka time 2.16 am).

Raavana 1 will be deployed to the 400km, 51.6 degree inclination orbit from ISS in June by Kibo, the Japanese Experiment Module in June 2019.

The satellite was designed by Sri Lankan Research Engineers Dulani Chamika and Tharindu Dayaratne from the Arthur C Clarke Institute, Moratuwa. The satellites were built at the Kyushu Institute of Technology in Japan.

Raavana 1 is designed to accomplish five missions including providing pictures of Sri Lanka and its neighboring countries.

The life span of the satellite is one and a half years.

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