Catalan government launches its first nanosatellite
Rocket carrying ‘Enxaneta’ satellite takes off from Kazakhstan after 48h delay
The Catalan government’s first nanosatellite was launched on Monday at 7:07 am (CET) from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan, exactly two days after the initial takeoff was postponed due to technical reasons.
‘Enxaneta’, named after the tiny children who climb to the top of Catalonia’s traditional human towers, is the first of six nanosatellites that will be put into orbit over the coming years as part of the government’s New Space strategy, which aims to boost the local economy by investing in the space industry.
Moment del llançament 🚀 l’#Enxaneta, el primer nanosatèl·lit que el @govern envia a l’espai 🛰 https://t.co/zZJtCSxWWQ pic.twitter.com/MvvxCt9Y3q— gencat (@gencat) March 22, 2021
At a cost of €574,750, the nanosatellite was designed and built by the Catalan company Sateliot. Its main goal is to improve IoT (Internet of Things) connectivity and collect data from about 100 sensors spread across Catalonia, monitoring water level in rivers, pollution and wildlife.
"Today is a great day for Catalonia," Catalonia's digital policies minister Jordi Puigneró said shortly after the launch. "Having access to the Internet of Things will be the base of the new digital economy. In the 21st century, connectivity is an economic and social right."
For more on the nanosatellite and the Catalan Space Agency, listen to this week's episode of Filling the Sink below.