Minairó will provide telecommunications services to the regional government when it passes over Catalan territory (twice a day).

The Falcon 9 rocket, which carries the third nanosatellite that will serve the Generalitat de Catalunya, Minairó, designed to improve the 5G technology, has taken off at 23:48 local time (8:48 am Spanish time) from the base of Vandenberg, California (United States), as reported by the company Sateliot and collected this Saturday the Efe agency.

It was the third attempt to launch the rocket after it was postponed twice due to bad weather conditions.

Minairó measures less than a shoebox: 30 centimeters long, 20 centimeters wide and 10 centimeters high, and will serve the autonomous administration in the field of telecommunications when it passes over Catalan territory (twice a day), while during the rest of its route it will serve other customers.

Sateliot, owned by Cellnex and Indra, has been awarded this service for 650,000 euros, excluding VAT.

The first nanosatellite launched months ago by the Generalitat, Enxaneta, related to the telecommunications sector, was also designed by Sateliot -although its manufacture was entrusted to the Catalan company Open Cosmos, which was awarded a contract for a little more than 574,000 euros-. The second nanosatellite contract, Menut, was awarded to Open Cosmos for 1.72 million euros. In this case, the nanosatellite is used to obtain earth observation data and monitor the effects of the climate crisis.

These initiatives are part of the Generalitat’s commitment to the new space economy, that is, the industry that arose in parallel to the CubeSat, a standard of nanosatellites that weigh less than ten kilos and have reduced the cost of space exploration.

The name given by the Generalitat to this nanosatellite comes from a children and youth program of the Catalan Corporation of Audiovisual Media (CCMA), specifically from the SX3 channel.


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