SUNSAT: South Africa’s first satellite in space
The SUNSAT satellite was conducted as a research and development programme at Stellenbosch University from 1992 till 2001. It obtained new technology for South Africa and set new performance levels internationally with regard to micro-satellites. SUNSAT also supported amateur radio communications internationally, as well as space physics experiments. During the development phase more than 100 postgraduate students based their theses on SUNSAT, and a supplementary science awareness programme reached more than 50 000 learners. This article provides an overview of the satellite configuration and concludes with a vision for satellite technology in South Africa.