Bangladesh has finally found its place in space with the successful delivery of Bangabandhu-1, the first Bangladeshi telecom satellite, into geostationary transfer orbit.
Bangabandhu-1 was launched by the most modern Falcon 9 rocket of SpaceX.
Initially, the launch was scheduled for Victory Day 2017. However, it was postponed till March after Hurricane Irma and subsequent floods hit Florida.
Earlier it was thought that the satellite will be launched next month as the test results were not received from the SpaceX authorities since it was analyzing the data.
Bangabandhu-1 launched from Florida’s Space X launch pad, would take eight days to reach its orbital slot at 119.1 degrees east.
The Falcon 9 rocket, known as the Block 5 version, shot into space from Cape Canaveral Air Force Base.
The 3,500-kilogram Bangabandhu-1 satellite separated from the rocket’s upper stage about 34 minutes from the launch time.
The launch is considered as a major milestone for both SpaceX and Bangladesh.
For Bangladesh, the launch is the culmination of several years of hard work to operate its own telecom satellite.
Bangabandhu-1 carries 26 Ku-band transponders and 14 C-band transponders, and is designed to operate for at least 15 years in geostationary orbit.
In addition to Bangladesh, the satellite’s coverage includes India, Nepal, Bhutan, Sri Lanka, the Philippines, Indonesia and several central Asian countries.
Bangladesh is the latest in the growing number of nations to have occupied a place in space by launching a national satellite.