Vietnam: Pico Dragon, the Vietnamese micro satellite was shipped to the International Space Station ( ISS) on Sunday. Pico Dragon is programmed to capture images of the earth, collect space environment data and test communication systems.
Pico Dragon, together with three other micro satellites of the United States, was carried by Japan”s Kounotori 4 (HTV-4) cargo spacecraft. The two-stage H-2B rocket carrying the HTV-4 ship lifted off at 4:48 am Tokyo time, initiating a five-day journey to the International Space Station. The 10x10x11.35 centimeter cube weighting nearly one kilogram is the first of its kind developed by Vietnamese engineers and researchers of the National Satellite Centre, an affiliate of the Vietnam Academy of Science and Technology. It is planned to stay at the ISS for two to three months before going into space. In May this year, Vietnam”s first remote sensing satellite, VNREDSat-1, was launched into orbit from the Kourou launch pad in Guiana of France.