Russian space agency Roscosmos has imposed a 24-hour hold on the Soyuz-2 rocket, which will carry South Africa's Sumbandila satellite into space.
Reports from Baikonur Cosmodrome state that bad weather and telemetry glitches are the causes of the hold.
The R26-million SumbandilaSat was due to be launched into space on Tuesday at 17:55, South African time.
Delays in space launches are common, due to the complexity of both the rocket and payloads. South Africa's fist satellite to reach space, Stellenbosch University's SunSat, experienced no fewer than 17 holds before it was finally launched. SunSat was launched on a US Delta II rocket from California in 1999.
The South African spacecraft is an 81-kg Earth observation microsatellite. It has been designed and built by specialist microsatellite company SunSpace & Information Systems (SunSpace), which is based in Stellenbosch in the Western Cape. SumbandilaSat - sumbandila means "lead the way" in the Venda language - is based around a new satellite platform developed by SunSpace. The microsatellite's main payload is a 6,25-m multispectral imager - that is, the imager has a resolution of 6,25 m x 6,25 m. This imager was also designed, developed, and made by SunSpace.
SumbandilaSat is one of six microsatellites that are to be launched on the Soyuz-2 rocket, along with the primary payload of a Russian Meteor M weather satellite. The Meteor M has a mass of 2 700 kg and is the first of a new generation of Russian meteorological satellites, equipped with new instruments. It is believed that these new systems required extra testing and evaluation, so repeatedly delaying a launch that had originally been planned for March. First it was delayed to May, and then to August, and finally to September.