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- January 21st, 2014 Posted in Uncategorised

Proba-V satellite21 January 2014 – A consortium of Belgian aerospace companies including QinetiQ Space yesterday signed a pre-contract agreement with the Vietnam Academy of Science and Technology (VAST) in the presence of Deputy Prime Minister Johan Vande Lanotte and the Belgian ambassador. The contract comprises a total package for building and supplying a complete satellite infrastructure in Vietnam. This consists of the construction of the satellite, ground station and test facilities, the training of Vietnamese partners, and the operation of the satellite for one year. Alongside the aerospace company from Kruibeke, the Walloon companies Spacebel and Amos are also part of the entirely Belgian consortium.

Optical earth observation satellite comparable with Proba-V

QinetiQ Space is responsible for the design and construction of the satellite. “The first contacts were initially made by software company Spacebel, which until recently had a branch in Vietnam, but negotiations dragged on for five years before the agreement could actually be signed,” says Frank Preud’homme, commercial director for QinetiQ Space.

The Vietnamese satellite has been given the name VNREDSat-1B, which stands for Vietnam Resource, Environment & Disaster Monitoring Satellite. The earth observation satellite will have many similarities with Proba-V, the satellite built by QinetiQ Space that is currently mapping worldwide vegetation. “This is an optical satellite with a hyperspectral instrument. As well as normal photographs, the camera can also take photographs containing added information. Hyperspectral data provides more detailed information about objects and enables precise identification,” explains Preud’homme.

The Vietnamese government wants to deploy the satellite for extensive monitoring of its agriculture. Vietnam’s economy relies very heavily on its natural resources, so proceeds from crop cultivation and water management are particularly important factors for shaping the country’s agricultural policy. The satellite will enable the country to make independent forecasts based on observations of its territory and surrounding environments from space.

“This new contract will allow QinetiQ Space to enhance its profile as a specialist in the construction and supply of earth observation satellites, and the signing of the agreement will also hopefully be a trigger for other countries we are currently holding discussions with,” concludes Frank Preud’homme.