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General News Mon, 27 Jun 2005

Ghana To Track US satellite In orbit

Ghana has been selected by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) of the United States to help to track its weather satellite in orbit.

The satellite called GOES-N is scheduled to be launched this week. It will provide continuous observation for the earth for data on weather, solar and space operations, as well as future science improvements in weather predictions and remote sensing.

The landmark project has Amalgamated Investments Limited as local consultants who in turn have appointed Arrow Network Systems (ANS) as other technical partners.

At a press briefing in Accra on Friday, Mr Gary Eigner, telemetry manager of OTB, South Africa, co-ordinators of the project in Africa, said that Ghana was chosen because of her unique location in the orbit trace of the satellite?s movement.

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?Ghana also has the required information and communications technology (ICT) infrastructure, management consultant and qualified local technicians to assist in the project,? he stated.

Kwaku Boadu, managing director of ANS, said that apart from Ghana?s expertise in ICT, the project initiators also considered the favourable regulatory environment in deciding to position the observatory equipment here.

He said, ?although the tracking of the satellite is going to last for only six-and-a-half minutes, the project will offer training and exposure to Ghanaian technicians,??the choice is a big boost to the country?s ICT agenda.?

Mr Boadu further said that the assembling of the sophisticated machines alone would cost about 600,000 dollars. The executive director of Ghana?s Meteorological Services Department, Mr Ato Wilson described the project as ?a revolution in meteorology.?

Source: Times
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