The first satellite in what will be the world’s first orbital constellation focusing on agriculture is set to launch this week. The African-developed and built EOS SAT-1 is the initial of what will become a system of seven and will launch from SpaceX’s launch site at Cape Canaveral, USA.
The South African aerospace start-up Dragonfly Aerospace is building a network of compound “eyes in the sky” that promises to be transformative for industries and societies.
EOS SAT is the world’s first agriculture-focused satellite constellation providing the agriculture and forestry industry with high-quality data to support efficient and sustainable practices.
Dragon Aerospace co-founder and chief executive Bryan Dean says they eagerly await the SpaceX Transporter-6 launch.
“This is a key moment for Dragonfly Aerospace and we are thrilled to be delivering EOS SAT-1 with a number of firsts – the first imaging satellite designed and built by Dragonfly, the first microsatellite to be manufactured in South Africa since 2009, the first satellite of the EOS SAT constellation and the first agri-focused constellation in space,” Dean told leading African start-up news platform Ventureburn.
Dean added that the Dragonfly Aerospace team looks forward to supporting EOS Data Analytics (EOSDA) with its mission to launch the next six satellites by 2025. The satellite is the first of a seven-satellite constellation in low Earth orbit for customer EOSDA.
Images obtained from Dragonfly’s EOS SAT-1 will deliver valuable information for harvest monitoring, application mapping, seasonal planning and assessments that analyse information such as soil moisture, yield prediction and biomass levels.
This data will support growers with reducing carbon dioxide emissions and help them to develop sustainable agricultural methods.
Such information will have important environmental benefits for the planet and help prevent natural habitats from being diminished for crop growth and maintain biodiversity.
The live launch is scheduled for 09.56 ET / 14.56 GMT on Tuesday, 3 January 2023.
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