JEDDAH: King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology (KACST) has completed the manufacture of two satellites, the Saudi Sat 5a and Saudi Sat 5b, in a new step in the field of exploration, communication, and scientific research.
The two earth-observation satellites are set to launch later this year and join the second generation of Saudi Arabia’s high-accuracy remote-sensing satellites.
The satellites will be used to provide high-resolution images of the planet’s surface from low earth orbits, help with urban planning, monitor movements and changes on the earth’s surface, and provide government agencies with services, in particular high resolution images.
KACST has so far launched 13 satellites, has collaborated with China in the Chang’e 4 mission to explore the far side of the moon; provided advanced services for remote-sensing systems; and has participated in the launch of an advanced system for maritime monitoring and tracking with satellite data, which includes daily coverage of 30,000 vessels across the world.
The launch of the two new satellites is in line with Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030, which aims to nationalize strategic technologies in Saudi Arabia, maximize local content, and empower Saudi youth to develop advanced technologies in the field of satellite development and construction.