Media Release

28 February 2014

After three months in orbit, South Africa's first cube satellite, developed by the Cape Peninsula University of Technology (CPUT) and launched on 21 November 2013, experienced two very close encounters with defunct satellites in the last two days. The nano-type satellite was launched from Russia.

The United States Joint Space Operations Centre in California notified the South African National Space Agency (SANSA) on Tuesday that the ZACUBE-1 (TshepisoSat) was on "close approach" with the defunct (Russian) COSMOS 2151 satellite. The satellites came within an estimated 185 m of each other over Antarctica on Wednesday. Remarkably, a second warning was received on Thursday, with TshepisoSAT predicted to come within 85 m of yet another defunct (Russian) satellite, METEOR 2-5, over Brazil.  Read more