Monday, May 13, 2024

China's Chang'e 6 Science Mission Successfully Deploys Pakistan's Moon CubeSat

China's Chang'e 6 Science Mission Successfully Deploys Pakistan's Moon CubeSat

Pakistan's Lunar CubeSat iCUBE-Q was successfully deployed into lunar orbit at 1314 hrs on May 8, 2024 from China's Chang'e 6 Moon Mission spacecraft. Pakistan is now the sixth Earth nation to orbit the Moon. After deployment, the satellite is performing as per the design specifications. All subsystems' health data is excellent. The other good news is that the optical imaging payload is also functional. Over the next few days thorough in-orbit testing of the satellite will be conducted. We look forward to receiving lunar surface images.

Pakistan launched its groundbreaking lunar mission aboard China's Chang'e-6 lunar probe on May 3, 2024. The Chinese probe blasted off atop a Long March-5 Y8 carrier rocket from the Wenchang Spacecraft Launch Site in south China's Hainan Province, according to the China National Space Administration (CNSA).

The iCUBE-Q CubeSat satellite, designed and developed by Pakistan's Institute of Space Technology (IST) in collaboration with China's Shanghai Jiao Tong University (SJTU) and Pakistan's national space agency, SUPARCO, represents a milestone in space cooperation.

The iCUBE-Q is among the first nano-satellites to travel into deep space. It is also the first satellite collaboration mission between Pakistan and China as well as the universities.

"Collaboration with China is really significant, it signifies global cooperation," said Syed Azish Ali Bukhari, a communication engineer and a research fellow at the IST.

"It truly gives a big boost to our young people so that they can look forward to such projects and even more complex and bigger projects in the future," said Qamar Ul Islam, director of the Space System Lab of IST.

CubeSats, renowned for their compact design and versatility, have transformed space exploration, empowering universities, research institutions, and commercial ventures to participate in cutting-edge missions at a fraction of the cost.

This collaborative endeavor underscores the deepening ties between Pakistan and China in the pursuit of scientific discovery beyond Earth's bounds.

The Chang'e-6 mission's primary objective is to gather samples from the far side of the moon, marking humanity's first-ever attempt to gather samples from this region of the moon.

Image Credits: China National Space Administration (CNSA)/Pakistan's Institute of Space Technology

Release Date: May 8, 2024

#NASA #CNSA #ESA #Space #Astronomy #Science #Earth #China #中国 #Moon #Change6 #嫦娥六号 #LunarSampleReturn #FarSide #SouthPole #Pakistan #iCUBEQ #CubeSat #SpaceTechnology #SpaceExploration #SolarSystem #InternationalCooperation  #STEM #Education اسلامی جمہوریہ پاكستان

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