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Egypt to launch its first scientific satellite with remote sensing devices in late 2007

Cairo, Egypt, 7 November 2007 – Egyptian Higher Education Minister Mr. Hani Hillal said Tuesday that Egypt, in cooperation with Ukraine, will launch a scientific satellite by the end of 2007 in Kazakhstan, the official news agency MENA reported.

The satellite, named as Egyptsat 1, will be launched from Kazakhstan with the aim of providing necessary information to serve development in all fields, Hillal said. He underlined the importance of scientific research and its role in educational, agricultural and other development fields.

Egyptsat 1 will carry two remote sensing devices — an infrared one and a multi-spectrum one, according to an earlier MENA report. Egyptsat 1, once launched, will be the country’s first satellite for scientific research. It has been jointly built by Egypt’s National Authority for Remote Sensing and Space Sciences in collaboration with Ukraine. The second and the third satellites will be named Egyptsat 2 and Sahrasat, respectively.

Egypt has already launched a number of satellites for nonscientific purposes. Nilesat 101 was launched in 1998 and Nilesat 102 in 2000, according to MENA. These satellites are now delivering more than 150 digital television channels as well as radio and multimedia services to more than several million homes over North Africa and the Middle East, from Morocco to the Gulf region.