n MNASSA : Monthly Notes of the Astronomical Society of South Africa - Astronomical colloquia : colloquia

Volume 70, Issue 9_10
  • ISSN : 0024-8266



Satellites have to operate in a hostile space environment that poses numerous threats from natural space material and man-made space objects. The variability of the space weather environment and the proliferation of space debris constitute major hazards for spacecraft in Earth orbit. SumbandilaSAT, South Africa's micro-satellite, was built with Commercial-Off-the-Shelf (COTS) components and was launched in a bid to harness Earth observation applications for sustainable development. COTS components though cheaper, are more vulnerable to the effects of space weather than space-qualified components. Assessing the feasibility of this COTS-based approach by examining the in-orbit performance of SumbandilaSAT is therefore imperative to the development of future South African indigenous satellites.

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