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Pakistan’s Historic Lunar Mission Set to Launch on Friday

Pakistan's Historic Lunar Mission Set to Launch on Friday

Pakistan is poised to embark on a groundbreaking lunar mission, with the country’s historic ICUBE-Q satellite gearing up for launch on Friday. The satellite will hitch a ride aboard China’s Chang’E6 spacecraft, scheduled to depart from Hainan, China, at 1250 PST.

Developed in collaboration with China’s Shanghai University SJTU and Pakistan’s national space agency SUPARCO, the ICUBE-Q satellite has been designed and built by the Institute of Space Technology (IST). It carries two optical cameras aimed at imaging the lunar surface. Following rigorous qualification and testing, ICUBE-Q has been integrated with the Chang’e6 mission, which marks the sixth in a series of China’s lunar exploration endeavors.

The launch event will be broadcast live on the IST website and social media platforms. Chang’e6 is set to touch down on the moon’s far side to gather samples from the surface for further research.

Also Read: Pakistan Joins China in Lunar Base Partnership

This mission holds significant importance for Pakistan as it will also carry a Pakistan CubeSat Satellite, iCube-Q, developed by IST. CubeSats are miniature satellites known for their small size and standardized design, typically weighing only a few kilograms. They are constructed in a cubic shape, comprising modular components adhering to specific size constraints.

CubeSats serve various purposes, including scientific research, technology development, and educational initiatives in space exploration. They are utilized for missions such as Earth observations, remote sensing, atmospheric research, communications, astronomy, and technology demonstration.

Due to their compact size and relatively low cost compared to traditional satellites, CubeSats offer opportunities for universities, research institutions, and commercial entities to participate in space missions and gather valuable data for scientific advancement and innovation. They serve as platforms for testing new technologies and concepts, facilitating broader access to space and fostering collaboration within the space community.