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Asia Pacific

#SpaceWatchGL Op’ed: NewSpace and the Geoeconomic Space Race to Come in the Indian Ocean Region

With China’s Belt and Road Initiative coming under criticism, and a proposed infrastructure programme in the offing from the so-called ‘Quad’ powers of Australia, India, Japan, and the United States, ThorGroup GmbH Chairman and President, Dr. John B. Sheldon, argues that the Quad powers tap the potential of their NewSpace …

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Bangladesh to Join the SAARC South Asia Satellite Project

India’s proactive initiative to connect South Asian countries with its South Asia Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) South Asia Satellite has received a boost with the recent announcement and agreement that Bangladesh will use the capability. The Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission (BTRC) plans to send a proposal to the Bangladeshi …

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Japan’s University of Tokyo to Build MicroSat Constellation for Laos, Nepal, Other Countries

A University of Tokyo team announced an innovative project to launch approximately 20 microsatellites over the next three years, in collaboration with more than 20 countries, including Laos and Nepal, to supplement existing telecommunications infrastructure. This marks another development in Japan’s expanding satellite diplomacy across Asia, as it builds influence …

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China to Build 300-Satellite Hongyan Mobile Communications Network With Thai Help

One of China’s largest space and satellite companies, the China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC), has announced plans to build a 300-satellite mobile telephone communications network providing coverage for Chinese mobile telephone users, according to Chinese press reports. The satellite communications mega-constellation, called Project Hongyan, will be built with …

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Thailand to Host Belt & Road Initiative Earth Observation Centre

The National Research Council of Thailand (NRCT) and the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) on 27 February, 2018, announced the launch of an international centre to carry out the work of the Chinese-led Belt and Road Initiative’s (BRI) Digital Belt and Road (DBAR) programme. The Digital Belt and Road (DBAR) …

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Thailand’s Thaicom Expands Its Reach With Launch Of Nava Ship Broadband Service Platform

Seeking to bolster disappointing revenue outcomes last year, Thaicom officially launched its Nava digital maritime service platform for ship and offshore operators. Announced this week, Nava provides broadband satellite services for ship operators. Headquartered in Thailand, Thaicom Public Company Limited is one of Asia’s leading satellite and digital platform operators …

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Thai University Completes KnackSat CubeSat, Set for August 2018 Launch

Faculty and students of the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering of King Mongkut’s University of Technology North Bangkok (KMUTNB) have completed the construction of a cubesat called KMUTNB Academic Challenge of Knowledge Satellite, also known as KnackSat. KnackSat, built in Thailand by undergraduate, Masters, and Ph.D. students under the …

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Japan Launches Latest IGS Reconnaissance Satellite to Monitor North Korean, Chinese, and Russian Threats

A Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) H-2A satellite launch vehicle successfully lofted Japan’s latest Intelligence Gathering Satellite (IGS) reconnaissance satellite from the Tanegashima Space Center in the Southwest of Japan on Tuesday, 27 February, 2018. The IGS-Optical 6 satellite is one of several Japan has in orbit, including a number with …

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South Korea to Sell KOMPSAT Imagery to India and the Philippines

The government of South Korea has approved the sale of high-resolution satellite imagery taken by Korean high-resolution Earth observation satellites. The Satrec Initiative, a local provider for earth observation, will sell the imagery, and it has already signed export deals with India and the Philippines. This approval was announced last …

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China’s Satellites for Recognition and Resource Access Strategy at Work in Bolivia

China continues to move forward in its ongoing use of regional space and satellite deals to access the natural resources of other countries. As reported last week in The Sydney Morning Herald, China is amassing space-related contracts with countries in Central and South America, regions which have often lagged in space-related …

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