May 23, 2024

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Pakistan launches the “historic” lunar mission on Friday aboard the Chinese lunar probe – Pakistan

Pakistan launches the “historic” lunar mission on Friday aboard the Chinese lunar probe – Pakistan

Pakistan's “historic” iCube-Q lunar mission will be launched on May 3 at 12:50 pm aboard China's Chang'e 6 lunar probe from Hainan, China, the Institute of Space Technology said on Tuesday.

According to the Institute of Space Technology (IST), the ICUBE-Q satellite was designed and developed by IST in collaboration with China's Shanghai University SJTU and Pakistan's national space agency SUPARCO.

The ICUBE-Q orbiter carries two optical cameras to image the lunar surface.

After successful qualification and testing, the iCube-Q has now been integrated with the Chang'e 6 mission.

Chang'e 6 is the sixth in a series of Chinese lunar exploration missions.

The launch activity will be live streamed on IST website and IST social media platforms.

China's lunar mission will land on the far side of the moon to collect samples from the surface and return to Earth for research.

The mission holds great importance for Pakistan, as it will also take the CubeSat iCube-Q satellite, developed by IST.

CubeSats are miniature satellites that are usually distinguished by their small size and uniform design.

It is built in a cube shape, and consists of modular components that adhere to specific size restrictions.

These satellites often weigh no more than a few kilograms, and are deployed in space for various purposes.

The primary purpose of CubeSats was to facilitate scientific research, technology development, and educational initiatives in space exploration.

These satellites have been used for a wide range of missions, including Earth observation, remote sensing, atmospheric research, communications, astronomy, and technology demonstration.

Due to their small size and relatively low cost compared to traditional satellites, CubeSats have provided opportunities for universities, research institutions, and commercial entities to participate in space missions and collect valuable data for scientific advancement and innovation.

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They serve as platforms for testing new technologies and concepts, making space accessible to a wide range of users and promoting collaboration within the space community.

Last August, India became the first country to land a rover near the moon's south pole, a historic victory for its ambitious, discounted space programme.