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Äike
01-24-2011, 01:26 PM
India Planned as Launch Site for Estonia's First Satellite (http://news.err.ee/sci-tech/47c165ef-72d2-4182-b82f-cd023296b491)

Estonia's first orbital satellite will likely blast off next year from India

The satellite developed by a group of Tartu and Tallinn students is to test a solar sail invented by Helsinki University professor Pekka Janhunen, ETV reported.

Mart Noorma, a teacher at the University of Tartu, says the best offer for launching the satellite has come from India. The launching would cost 60,000 euros, said Noorma.

The satellite weighs one kilogram to save on the volume - the biggest limit on cost.

Heretik
01-24-2011, 01:31 PM
Estonia joining US Star Wars program? :D

Äike
01-24-2011, 01:38 PM
Estonia joining US Star Wars program? :D

Not yet, we have to wait for a few decades. ;)

Groenewolf
01-24-2011, 01:40 PM
Estonia joining US Star Wars program? :D

More like the Indian ;) . But still good to hear that Estonia is testing solar sail technology. It might be a way to save on fuel costs on relative short distance space travels.

Äike
01-24-2011, 01:51 PM
More like the Indian ;)

The thing is, almost all satellite launch centers are near the Equator. If someone tried to launch a satellite from Europe or from Northern-Europe, near the Arctic circle, then scientists would laugh with tears in their eyes. The French launch site is in French Guiana and overall the northernmost rocket launch center is in Florida, I think.

People who know physics more than I do, could explain this further. But it is considerably easier to get into space from regions near the Equator, than from a region near the Arctic.

Your Dutch compatriot also mentioned launching rockets from Europe a few months ago, but that's not possible. Thus the reason why France launches its rockets from French Guiana, not France. Although purely from a infrastructural viewpoint, it would be better to launch rockets from France.

Heretik
01-24-2011, 01:58 PM
Equator = lower gravity. ;)

Äike
01-24-2011, 01:59 PM
Equator = lower gravity. ;)

I'm assuming that everyone already knew that. But there's definitely a more complicated way to explain all the details.

Heretik
01-24-2011, 02:06 PM
OK, has something with the speed of the Earth and centrifugal force being stronger on Equator too.
Why complicate things? :confused: :D

EDIT: http://www.aerospaceweb.org/question/spacecraft/q0080.shtml