http://www.engineeringnews.co.za
  SEARCH
Login
R/€ = 13.71Change: 0.00
R/$ = 10.95Change: 0.07
Au 1198.83 $/ozChange: 0.67
Pt 1228.00 $/ozChange: 5.00
 
 
Note: Search is limited to the most recent 250 articles. Set date range to access earlier articles.
Where? With... When?








Start
 
End
 
 
And must exclude these words...
Close Main Search
Close Main Login
My Profile News Alerts Newsletters Logout Close Main Profile
 
Agriculture   Automotive   Chemicals   Competition Policy   Construction   Defence   Economy   Electricity   Energy   Environment   ICT   Metals   Mining   Science and Technology   Services   Trade   Transport & Logistics   Water  
What's On Press Office Tenders Suppliers Directory Research Jobs Announcements Contact Us
 
 
 
RSS Feed
Article   Comments   Other News   Research   Magazine  
 
 
Feb 28, 2008

SA ponders satellite launch options

Back
 
Pretoria|Africa|Design|Nuclear|Africa|Europe|China|India|South Africa|South African Air Force Museum|Nuclear|Satellite Launch Capability|Satellite Launch Vehicle|Department Of Science And Technology|Department Of Trade And Industry|Missile Technology Control Regime|Val Munsami
|Africa|Design|Nuclear|Africa||||Nuclear|||
pretoria|africa-company|design|nuclear-company|africa|europe|china|india|south-africa|south-african-air-force-museum|nuclear-industry-term|satellite-launch-capability|satellite-launch-vehicle|department-of-science-and-technology|department-of-trade-and-industry|missile-technology-control-regime|val-munsami
© Reuse this The fact that all the leading players in Outer Space have, or are developing, national launch capabilities, has resulted in debate within and between government departments and institutions about South Africa exploring the establishment of its own satellite launch capability.

"This has definitely come up," reveals Department of Science and Technology space science and technology manager Dr Val Munsami.

"In fact, when we were doing the public consultation on the National Space Science and Technology Strategy, the issue of launch capability came up, purely because of the difficulties we are encountering with SumbandilaSat at the moment."

"This is space policy issue," he points out. "The Department of Trade and Industry is busy drafting a space policy at the moment and the launch issue is part of these discussions. The launch capability issue is also sensitive. Cast your mind back to how we got involved in the Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR)."

In the 1980s, as part of the country's then nuclear weapons programme, South Africa developed an intermediate-range ballistic missile design. Three such missiles (designed RSA 1 to RSA 3) were built, of which two were test flown.

The third was converted to be a satellite launch vehicle for a spy satellite (which later evolved into the abortive GreenSat, which never flew), only to be subsequently de-activated under international supervision, and then put on display at the South African Air Force Museum at Air Force Base Swartkops, just south of Pretoria.

Further, South Africa adhered to the MTCR. "Some of the negotiations that took place at that time were that we were not going to embark on the development of any new missiles," points out Munsami.

Just as missiles can be adapted to launch satellites, it is not impossible to adapt satellite launch rockets to become missiles. "But, obviously, now that we're members of the MTCR, that means we're responsible users of the technology. So one has to weigh that option, whether we keep those promises, or whether we be responsible users of that technology. And it is clearly a political decision that has to be taken at a policy level."

As for SumbandilaSat, that was meant to have been launched last year, by the Russian Navy, on a converted Shtil submarine-launched ballistic missile. "We have official indications from the Russians that it is problematic that the Shtil can be used," he reports. "They have given us other options, but they will cost us time and money." This is because some of the integration interfaces between the satellite and the launch rocket will have to be re-designed.

As a result, the South Africans are also looking at other launch options, seeking to find that which is best for the country. "India is one of the options," he confirms. "Obviously, Europe is another. We haven't actually considered China but, if it comes our way, we definitely would. But that's not to say we have closed the door on the Russian option yet. We have to weigh the different options and see which is the best to suit our needs."



Edited by: Creamer Media Reporter
© Reuse this Comment Guidelines (150 word limit)
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Latest News
Updated 1 hour 16 minutes ago A Spoor & Fisher partner on Wednesday called on the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) to finalise its proposed policy for Intellectual Property (IP). The policy, which had not been drafted in consultation with IP law experts, was published in September 2013,...
Auditor-General Kimi Makwetu
Updated 1 hour 26 minutes ago Auditor-General Kimi Makwetu has called on all government leaders to play a crucial role in ensuring that government departments and entities improve their audit outcomes. He has raised concerns over irregular expenditure, non-compliance with legislation, auditees...
Updated 1 hour 42 minutes ago The Somalia Stock Exchange expects seven companies in the telecoms, financial services and transport sectors to list their shares when the bourse is set up in 2015, its founder said. Somalia's economy is slowly recovering from more than two decades of conflict,...
More
 
 
Recent Research Reports
Defence 2014: A review of South Africa's defence industry (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Defence 2014 report examines South Africa’s defence industry, with particular focus on the key participants in the sector, the innovations that have come out of the sector, local and export demand, South Africa’s controversial multibillion-rand...
Road and Rail 2014: A review of South Africa's road and rail infrastructure (PDF report)
Creamer Media’s Road and Rail 2014 report examines South Africa’s road and rail transport system, with particular focus on the size and state of the country’s road and rail network, the funding and maintenance of these respective networks, and the push to move road...
Real Economy Year Book 2014 (PDF Report)
This edition drills down into the performance and outlook for a variety of sectors, including automotive, construction, electricity, transport, steel, water, coal, gold, iron-ore and platinum.
Real Economy Insight: Automotive 2014 (PDF Report)
This four-page brief covers key developments in the automotive industry over the past 12 months, including an overview of South Africa’s automotive market, trade figures, production and the policies influencing the sector.
Real Economy Insight: Construction 2014 (PDF Report)
This five-page brief covers key developments in the construction industry over the past 12 months. It provides an overview of the sector and includes details of employment in the sector, infrastructure and municipal spending, as well as insight into companies’...
Real Economy Insight: Electricity 2014 (PDF Report)
This five-page brief covers key developments in the electricity industry over the past 12 months, including details of State-owned power utility Eskom’s generation activities, funding and tariffs, independent power producers and prospects for the sector.
 
 
 
 
 
This Week's Magazine
JSE-listed real estate investment trust (REIT) Rebosis Property Fund achieved a distribution growth of 8.1% to 99.45c per linked unit in the financial year ended August 31, despite volatile market conditions.
JAMES ROBERTS The MOM incubator was designed to help babies in developing nations who were dying in conflict-struck nations or who do not receive hospital care
A low-cost, inflatable incubator won this year’s international James Dyson design award, which aims to encourage and inspire the next generation of design engineers.
The World Bank released its ‘Doing Business 2015: Going Beyond Efficiency’ report last month and ranked South Africa 43 out of 189 global economies for its ease of doing business, with Singapore topping the rankings.
Air Products South Africa officially launched its R300-million Eastern Cape air- separation unit (ASU), at its new manufacturing facility in the Coega Industrial Development Zone (IDZ), earlier this month. It is the second facility that Air Products launched in South...
BMW South Africa (SA) has signed a power purchasing agreement with energy company Bio2Watt. The offtake partnership will bring renewable energy to the carmaker’s Rosslyn plant, north of Pretoria.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Alert Close
Embed Code Close
content
Research Reports Close
Research Reports are a product of the
Research Channel Africa. Reports can be bought individually or you can gain full access to all reports as part of a Research Channel Africa subscription.
Find Out More Buy Report
 
 
Close
Engineering News
Completely Re-Engineered
Experience it now. Click here
*website to launch in a few weeks