Taiwan flags space ambition with domestically developed weather satellite

 Taiwan’s first locally constructed weather satellite reveals its willingness to present its space industry, President Tsai Ing-wen said on Friday, praising the programme as a step to take the island to the stars. While Taiwan has since the 1990s had a satellite programme called Formosat, tension with China has provided to the government more momentum, with strategies to utilize satellites in medium- and low-earth orbit for Internet services if China assaults and severs sea cables or other mediums of communication.

Sending off the Triton weather satellite to French Guiana where it will be presented in September, Ms Tsai said more than 80 per cent of its components were made to grow and produced locally, and it would carry Taiwan’s own global navigation satellite system. “The Wind-Hunter Satellite is born-and-bred made in Taiwan,” she noted at Taiwan Space Agency in Hsinchu, home to the island’s prominent and admirable semiconductor industry, referring to it by its Chinese-language name. “The Wind-Hunter Satellite proves that with the benefits of Taiwan’s semiconductor and precision production, it is completely proficient to enter the global space industry,” Ms Tsai said.

She also said that the satellite reveals Taiwan’s willingness to create a space industry and take part in the space age. Triton will be presented into a circular low-earth orbit at an altitude of about 550km – 650km, revealed by the Taiwan Space Agency. It is created to gather sea surface wind information that will be together with ground radar wind field information to better forecast the path of typhoons and heavy downpour, both of which sub-tropical Taiwan frequently gets.